The Virginia State Medevac Committee has recognized that the increased use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (commonly known as drones) is a safety concern, and has made a coordinated effort involving all the medevac services that serve Virginia, as well as the Virginia OEMS, to provide information for both drone operators, as well as personnel that coordinate medevac landing zones to increase awareness and safety in the use of drones with medevac operations.
Medevac operations have inherent challenges that put aircraft and flight crews at risk, such as unscheduled take offs and landings, unplanned and time sensitive emergency flights, and landing zones that are in areas that aren’t commonly used for takeoffs and landings by aircraft. The addition of the use of drones in the areas near locations where medevac operations take place potentially adds to that risk. The damage to medevac aircraft by a collision with a drone could be catastrophic.
EMS agencies should be working with their local medevac services to collaborate on training in drone safety in medevac operations.