Life Star helicopter base opens at MidState Medical Center in Meriden

Life Star helicopter base opens at MidState Medical Center in Meriden


MERIDEN — Life Star opened a new hangar at MidState Medical Center this week, providing the emergency transportation operation a more central location in the state.

“Life Star helicopter is an integral and strategic part of Hartford Health Care’s delivery system,” said Hartford Healthcare spokesman Shawn Mawhiney. “Having a hangar at MidState is a way to bring lifesaving services closer to people in the MidState region and it brings lifesaving services that much closer to residents.”

Life Star will transport victims in need of trauma care to Hartford Hospital. A second Life Star helicopter is stored at Backus Hospital in Norwich. The third hangar is at Hartford Hospital.

The MidState hangar will house the Eurocopter EC145 helicopter, office space, crew quarters, a three-ton lift for maintenance needs, a heated helipad and a 12,000 gallon above-ground fuel tank, according to MidState spokesman Corey Hirth.

A Life Star crew consists of a nurse, flight respiratory therapist, pilot, mechanic and communication specialist. Patients in need of critical care can be reached within a 150-mile radius of a base. Approximately 1,200 patients are transported by Life Star annually.

Life Star began operating in the state in 1985, and has since transported more than 30,000 patients.

Each Life Star helicopter can carry two patients at once and travel up to 155 miles per hour.

In critical situations, “every second counts,” Mawhiney said.

“Having a Life Star helicopter in strategic places in Connecticut maximizes our ability to provide life saving services,” Mawhiney said.

City Councilor Larue Graham, chairman of the council’s Public Safety Committee, said the new hangar was a good thing for the city and state as a whole. 203-317-2231 Twitter: @LeighTaussRJ

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