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Air Ambulance and Spatial Disorientation

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Air ambulance pilots usually have to deal with spatial disorientation. If you are wondering what spatial disorientation is, simply put it is the inability to gauge the landscape ahead due to bad weather conditions. Sometimes, it might even lead the pilot to misjudge the landscape before him. By the time he realizes his mistake, it is often too late and the result is a deadly crash. It is widely believed that this was the reason behind the fatal crash that killed Kobe Bryant recently and his daughter Gianna who was just 13 years old. Spatial disorientation has been the root cause of many air ambulance crashes in the past.

An Air Ambulance Technology can Make a Difference

TAWS or terrain awareness and warning system can make a whole lot of difference to air ambulance services and the safety of crew members as well as patients. It is a sophisticated device that scouts for hidden mountain peaks in mist and warn the pilot well in advance. The congress is now making this a feature mandatory for all commercial helicopters. This will include air ambulance service providers too. TAWS is compulsory for all air ambulance vehicles in the United States. However, the same cannot be said the world over.

Real-Time Intelligence About Weather is Important

Pilots have to often fly in emergencies. It is hard to say no to a call when the patient is in a dire situation. In circumstances like these, the pilot, in the absence of TAWS, has to rely entirely on his senses and judgment to fly the air ambulance safely. Spatial disorientation becomes a risk in such cases. We have seen time and again that this approach is prone to failure and results in loss of life. It is, therefore, imperative that medical flights all over the world make use of this technology to stay safe.

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