The RACQ LifeFlight helicopter at the site of a quad bike crash last financial year (Photo: RACQ LifeFlight)

July 14, 2021

Motor vehicle accidents were the top reason that LifeFlight’s Toowoomba and Bundaberg-based helicopters were called out last financial year.

RACQ LifeFlight Rescue aeromedical crews performed a record 698 missions from the Toowoomba base last financial year, the busiest service in LifeFlight’s state-wide chopper fleet.

Those community missions are valued at approximately $17.4 million.

Bundaberg crew flew 286 critical missions valued at more than $7.1 million.

The average cost of each airlift was $25,000.

Patients are flown at no charge.

The top five missions from Toowoomba:

1. Motor vehicle accidents (68)
2. Serious illness/infection (44)
3. Cardiac (42)
4. Medical (unspecified) (34)
5. Falls (32)

The top five missions from Bundaberg:

1. Motor vehicle accidents (49)
2. Falls (34)
3. Cardiac (27)
4. Serious illness/infection (25)
5. Search (22)

“Our crews have responded to a variety of accidents, from motor vehicle accidents on the highways, through to quad bike accidents in farming and regional areas,” RACQ LifeFlight Rescue Director of Helicopter Operations Brian Guthrie said.

The Toowoomba crews spent 1062.8 hours in the air to help the community – the equivalent of flying from Toowoomba to London return, nine times.

Bundaberg crews were in flight for 390 hours, the equivalent of flying non-stop for more than 16 days.

Overall, during the the past 12 months, RACQ LifeFlight Rescue’s combined resources of community helicopters, Air Ambulance jets and Critical Care Doctors performed 6733 lifesaving missions,  400 more than the previous financial year.

RACQ LifeFlight Rescue’s community helicopters completed 2113 of those missions.

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