The Falcon fleet of the Aeronautica Militare has achieved the milestone during an emergency medical flight.
In the afternoon of Feb. 9, 2023, a Falcon 900 of the 31° Stormo (Wing) of the Aeronautica Militare (Italian Air Force) carried out a medical transport mission, to carry a seven-year child from Catania to Bergamo.
The emergency flight was requested by the Prefecture of Catania and was immediately arranged and coordinated by the Summit Situation Room of the Italian Air Force Command which, among all its tasks, has also the one of activating and managing urgent medical transport services conducted on a 24/7/365 basis by aircraft belonging to the 31° Stormo, based at Ciampino, the 14° Stormo of Pratica di Mare, and the 46^ Brigata Aerea (Air Brigade) from Pisa.
One of the Falcon 900 aircraft of the Wing, on readiness status at Ciampino airport, was launched, arrived in Catania, embarked the young patient and took off for Bergamo. Once landed, the child was transferred to a nearby hospital by ambulance; the jet returned to Ciampino airport where it resumed its readiness service.
With today’s emergency medical transport mission, the Falcon fleet of the 31st Wing has reached 150,000 flight hours. The 100K FH mark had been achieved in 2009.
The fleet is currently made of two Falcon 50 (MM62026 and MM62029) and three Falcon 900, one 900EX (MM62210) and two Falcon 900EX-Easy (MM62244 and MM62245). Both regularly carry out “hospital” (EMS) as well as “humanitarian” flights. It is not the range of the flight that determines the type of mission, but the possibility to plan the sortie: “Humanitarian” are those flights whose need is known with even a little forewarning; “Hospital” flights are those whose need was previously unknown and require a departure within 2 hours. The aircraft used for the latter are only the Falcon 50 and the Falcon 900EX-Easy that ensure the transportation on the medium-long range and can both embark stretchers. The Falcon 50 has an endurance that exceeds the 7 hours, has 9 seats and can carry 2 stretchers. The more modern Falcon 900EX-Easy, offers increased payload and an endurance of up to 10 hours.
Although identical to the 900EX (same airframe, engine and thus endurance), the “Easy” has digital avionics and cabin space to carry 3 stretchers. Furthermore, the aircraft is equipped with the EVASAN module that can provide power and oxygen to electro-medical equipment.