The Mount Isa-based RACQ LifeFlight Rescue crew has performed rigorous training, atop rocky outcrops and pinnacles, to ensure they're ready for rescues in potentially-challenging environments.
Three Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) Flight Paramedics completed the training exercise yesterday, to practise hover entries and exits from the rescue helicopter.
The procedure involves crew members carefully getting in and out of the aircraft, while it hovers a small distance off the ground.
Mount Isa's RACQ LifeFlight Rescue pilot, Russell Procter, said hover entries and exits are useful when the crew needs to get a QAS Flight Paramedic to a scene, which isn't suitable for landing or winching.
"The benefits of this are for when we're called to areas that could be flooded or terrain we can't land on and when winching isn't an option," Mr Procter said.
"It's another tool in our toolkit to ensure we can help people in need across the North-West."
The training started with a briefing session, before the crew ran through scenarios and drills in the chopper, while it was still on the ground.
Once they were confident with the procedures, the crew flew to a rocky area about 10 kilometres west of Mount Isa, to put their skills to the test.
"It's all done in a very safe and controlled training environment," Mr Procter said.
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