Air Ambulance Unit History
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Unit History

Scottish Ambulance Air Wing
Role: Air Ambulance

(Scottish Ambulance Service NHS Trust).
The first Scottish air ambulance helicopter was a Bo 105D (G-BATC) operated by Bond Helicopters for a six-month trial in 1989. Initially based at Dundee Airport, the trial was extended for a further six-month period and relocated to Inverness.

In 1993 a contract was awarded to Bond Helicopters to provide air ambulance cover for the Scottish Ambulance Service using two Bo 105Ds, one based at Inverness (Raigmore Hospital) and the other at Prestwick Airport. The second helicopter later moved from Prestwick to Glasgow. Also in 1993, the first BN-2B Islander aircraft operated by Loganair appeared in the colour scheme of the Scottish Ambulance Service. Of the five Islanders in the Loganair fleet, three were used for air ambulance duties - based at Glasgow, Kirkwall (Orkney) and Lerwick (Shetland).

In April 2006 a seven year contract with Gama Aviation commenced, delivering new aircraft and faster response times. Gama Aviation now operate two EC 135 Eurocopter helicopters from Glasgow and Inverness (sub-contracted to Bond Air Services) and two brand new purpose-built pressurised fixed-wing King Air 200C aircraft from Aberdeen and Glasgow. The King Airs are used for planned patient transfers and replaced the Islanders previously used.

Air Bases:
Base Duration
Dundee Airport 1989 - 1989
Inverness (Dalcross) Airport 1990 - Present
Prestwick Airport 1995? - 19??
Glasgow City Heliport (Clyde Heliport, Scottish Exhibition Centre) ? - Present
Glasgow Airport ? - Present
Aberdeen (Dyce) Airport ? - Present
Kirkwall Airport, Orkney ? - Present
Lerwick (Tingwall) Airport, Shetlands ? - Present

Aircraft Used:
Type Qty Service Example Serials
MBB Bo 105DBS-411989 - 1990G-BATC, Dundee/Inverness
MBB Bo 105DBS-411993 - 2000G-BUIB, Inverness, c/s 'Helimed 2'
MBB Bo 105DBS-411995? - April 1999G-BUTN, Prestwick/Glasgow, c/s 'Helimed 5'
Eurocopter AS.365N Dauphin 21April 1999 - 2000G-BLEZ, Glasgow, c/s 'Helimed 5'
Eurocopter EC.135T2+12000 - PresentG-SASA, Inverness, c/s 'Helimed 2'
Eurocopter EC.135T212000 - PresentG-SASB, Glasgow City, c/s 'Helimed 5'
BN-2B Islander11993 - 1996G-BEDZ, Lerwick, w/o 19 May 1996
BN-2B Islander11993 - 2006G-BLNJ, Glasgow til 1999, Kirkwall 1999+
BN-2B Islander11999 - 2006G-BPCA, Glasgow
BN-2B Islander11993 - 1999G-BLNW, Kirkwall
BN-2B Islander11993 - 1999G-BJOP, Lerwick
BN-2B Islander11999 - 2006G-BLDV, Lerwick
BN-2B Islander12002 - 2005G-BOMG, w/o 15 Mar 2005
Beech Super King Air 20011999 - 2003G-SBAS, Aberdeen
Beech Super King Air 20011993 - 2006G-BPPM, Aberdeen
Beech Super King Air 20011993 - 2006G-HAMA, Aberdeen back-up
Beech Super King Air 200C1Apr 2006 - PresentG-SASC, Glasgow
Beech Super King Air 200C1Apr 2006 - PresentG-SASD, Aberdeen

G-BUIB (photo, Chris Jones)
(photo, Iain Kitchen)
G-SASB (photo, Martin Briscoe)
(photo, Iain Kitchen)
G-SBAS (photo, Gama Aviation)


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First Created: 27 July 2007 - Last Revised: 6 September 2008
Copyright © 2007 John Hayles.     e-mail: