The Devon Air Ambulance service celebrates its 25th anniversary this month. It has flown almost 25,000 missions and saved tens of thousands of lives since it started in 1992. The milestone is being celebrated with a family day and emergency displays at Topsham today.
The Devon Air Ambulance was started by Dr Ann Ralli after she lost her son Ceri Thomas when he was involved in a car accident while riding his bike on Sidbury Hill. He was just 18 years old.
It took an ambulance an hour to get Ceri to hospital, by which time it was too late to save him. When she asked a doctor if anything might have saved him he said 'only an air ambulance’.
She realised in rural areas it took longer than 'the golden hour', when many patients can be saved, for an ambulance to reach a hospital by road.
Ann spent six years raising money to launch the service which cost £500,000 to set up. With two helicopters it now costs £5.5 million a year to run all through money raised from the public.
More than 1000 bikers are supporting Devon Air Ambulance in a procession through Devon today.Read the full story ›
Devon Air Ambulance is warning people about the dangers of using laser pens, after one of its helicopters was targeted on an emergency call.Read the full story ›
Devon's Air Ambulance has only been able to fly at night for a few months but do not have enough locations where they can land.Read the full story ›
Dragons will roar on the River Exe this autumn, when Devon Air Ambulance Trust holds its second annual dragon boat festival.
With 16 rowers needed for each boat, the charity hopes friends, neighbours and colleagues will team up to tame the dragon, helping them raise money for their work.
Our first Dragon Boat Festival last year was a great success and we know many of last year’s teams are looking forward to taking on the dragon again! A few of the teams from last year are already challenging each other to do better!
An investigation is underway into a crash in East Devon in which two elderly pedestrians were crushed by a water bowser.
It came loose from a tractor on the A375 at Sidbury, north of Sidmouth yesterday morning. The tank crashed into the man and woman, leaving them with severe leg injuries. They were taken to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital for treatment.
They're the lifesavers that currently only operate in the daytime. The Devon Air Ambulance service responds to emergencies within minutes - but their two helicopters are currently NOT allowed to fly at night.
That could mean no rescues are possible after four o'clock in the winter.
The charity that runs the service wants to extend its flying hours - but it needs to raise a million pounds to fund it.
Richard Lawrence reports:
Devon air ambulance wants to run flights at night.
The Charity which funds the two Air Ambulance service has set a target to extend flying hours to 10pm all year around from 2016. But it needs more funding for new equipment.
A 40 year old woman has suffered neck injuries after being hit by a large kite at Sandy Bay in Devon.
Exmouth Coastguard and Devon Ambulance Service attended the incident shortly before 5 o'clock on Friday evening. The woman was taken for treatment by the air ambulance.