ADAC celebrates 30 years of Christoph Brandenburg in Senftenberg

ADAC celebrates 30 years of Christoph Brandenburg in Senftenberg

24-Apr-2024 Source: ADAC Luftrettung

Departure into the fourth decade of life: The non-profit ADAC Luftrettung has been operating the state of Brandenburg’s intensive care transport helicopter (ITH) “Christoph Brandenburg” at its Senftenberg location since April 20, 1994. Together with the ADAC rescue helicopter “Christoph 33”, which has also been stationed there since 1991, it brings people quick help from the air in medical emergencies. To mark this anniversary, ADAC Luftrettung is inviting people to an open day in Senftenberg on May 4th.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister of Brandenburg, Ursula Nonnemacher, said on the occasion of the anniversary: ​​“Air rescue with its five locations in our state of Brandenburg is particularly important. The Senftenberg location with its two helicopters is a flagship location. The rescuers can be at any point in Lusatia within 20 minutes. This is valuable time that, in an emergency, can mean the difference between life and death. The rapid intensive care transport, available 24 hours a day, supports all hospitals in the region in treating complex cases.”

Frédéric Bruder, the managing director of ADAC Luftrettung gGmbH, emphasized: “I would like to thank the state of Brandenburg as the sponsor, our cooperation partner Sana Kliniken Niederlausitz, the partners from the rescue service and our crews for the excellent and trusting cooperation over the last 30 years express thanks. If patients in the region need to receive initial and further medical care or be transferred by helicopter, people can continue to count on us in the future. We are there – day and night.”

Milestones in the history of “Christoph Brandenburg”

The ADAC Luftrettung initially put a BK 117 machine into operation as the state’s first intensive care transport helicopter (ITH) under the radio call name “Christoph 71”. In 2003 there was a switch to the then most modern generation of rescue helicopters, the EC 145, and the name was changed to “Christoph Brandenburg”. From 2016 onwards, ADAC Luftrettung used a type H145 machine from Airbus Helicopters, which it replaced in 2022 with the latest and most powerful model with a five-blade rotor, which has since transported patients even more safely due to, among other things, lower vibrations.

“Christoph Brandenburg” and the Senftenberg crews carry out intensive care transport and emergency operations 24 hours a day and, for more than five years, have also carried out particularly demanding emergency operations (so-called primary operations) in the dark at non-designated landing sites. The flying Yellow Angels therefore have special training and wear special night vision goggles, which have been part of the “Night Vision Imaging System” (NVIS) used for the first time in Senftenberg by the ADAC Luftrettung since 2011. The glasses electronically amplify remaining natural light and, together with the darkened cockpit, create a well-coordinated and safe night flight environment in which the pilots can easily see obstacles such as wind turbines or power lines.

With around 60 employees, Senftenberg is the largest ADAC Luftrettung station in Germany and one of the few with two helicopters. On behalf of the state, ADAC Luftrettung invested a total of 1.6 million euros in the expansion and modernization of the station by 2011, which, in addition to the operations center for the helicopters, also houses state-of-the-art rooms for accommodating the crews. There is also a training room available, which is also used for joint training with other rescue workers.

The responsible body is the Ministry for Social Affairs, Health, Integration and Consumer Protection of the State of Brandenburg. The operations are coordinated by the Integrated Regional Control Center in Lausitz and the Central Coordination Center for Transfers and Intensive Care Transports of the State of Brandenburg. The station is headed by pilot Frank Girschik, and the medical director is Dr. Oliver Eckermann, Jascha Mahro leads the team of emergency paramedics (TC HEMS).

The crews from Senftenberg have completed around 73,000 missions to date. “Christoph Brandenburg” flew around 28,000, around 1,000 of them last year. In addition to intensive care transport – for example between a hospital and a specialist clinic – the most common reasons for deployment were cardiovascular diseases, accidents and neurological emergencies.

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