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Tuesday September 12, 2006 :

REGA, the Swiss Air-Rescue, selects the Agusta A109K2

Swiss Air-Rescue, REGA, Selects The AgustaWestland Grand Helicopter For Their Mountain Rescue and Ambulance Operations

UK / Italy : (AgustaWestland Press Release ) - AgustaWestland is proud to announce that eight Grand helicopters will equip the Swiss Air-Rescue, REGA, mountain rescue bases located throughout Switzerland. The Grand has been selected as the best helicopter capable of carrying out high altitude and high temperature rescue missions, following a rigorous evaluation process including test flight activities undertaken by REGA experts. The Grand will also carry out missions such as the rapid transfer of severe injured patients from hospital to hospital providing them with specialised medical treatment in flight.

Speaking after the announcement, Renzo Lunardi, AgustaWestland’s Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing said “We are delighted by the REGA decision to buy the AgustaWestland Grand, which will extend the long and successful collaboration between REGA and ourselves. The Grand is the best performing helicopter in the light twin engine class and will provide REGA an exceptional aircraft.”

The selection of the Grand fits into the legacy established in 1989 when the prestigious Swiss Air-Rescue organisation selected the model A109K2 to perform its demanding mountain rescue missions. While, after twenty years, the A109K2 model remains unmatched by any competitor helicopter in the specific hot/high rescue role, today with the new Grand AgustaWestland provides the marketplace with its worthy, more capable and technologically advanced successor. The Grand configuration for REGA will be specifically equipped to satisfy their demanding requirements as it was for the REGA A109K2s. REGA is acknowledge as one of the most experienced air-rescue organisation worldwide and its choice provides further testimony of the Grand’s performance, versatility and competitiveness.

The Grand is a new top-of-the-range light twin helicopter developed to meet a wide range of market requirements and provides levels of cabin space and payload that until now could only be met by larger, more expensive helicopters. AgustaWestland is committed to provide the marketplace with a modern, comprehensive commercial product line, ranging from single-engine to heavy multi-engine helicopters. This new intermediate size helicopter with light twin economics fits as a natural addition to the product line, at the upper end of the light twin FAR/JAR 27 segment. The Grand’s spacious, unobstructed passenger cabin and a wide sliding cabin door (1.40 m - 4 ft 7in) on both sides, give easy access for passengers, patients and survivors. With its large cabin, wide sliding cabin doors and large useful payload, the Grand sets a new standard in the EMS/air ambulance market with unrivalled characteristics of functional effectiveness compared to any other light twin helicopter. Powered by two PW207C engines, each rated at 716 kW (960 shp) for take-off, the Grand has exceptionally good hot and high performance making it ideal for rescue operations in mountainous environments.

Helis.com note:

REGA, Swiss Air-Rescue, is the air rescue service which provides emergency medical assistance via helicopter in Switzerland, notably in mountain but also in cases of life-threatening emergencies in the plain. It is a non-profit foundation financed through donations and patronage.

The name is an unusual bilingual abbreviation from "Schweizerische Rettungsflugwacht - Garde Aérienne Suisse de Sauvetage", both meaning "Swiss aerial rescue guard", in German and French respectively.

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