Perhaps there is no such thing as a standard air rescue, but nothing seemed amiss on the Air Evac helicopter flight early in southwestern Louisiana in 2018.
Then, the flight nurse and paramedic on board realized the pilot wasn’t quite making sense as he asked for the direction of the hospital where they were heading.
They realized he was incapacitated and sent out a mayday call. Fortunately, the helicopter had been equipped with a Genesys stability augmentation system and autopilot, keeping the craft in the air.
“They were able to revive him, and he was able to land safely, but because they were in the air for even 12 seconds without him having control of that helicopter, if our autopilot had not been on that helicopter and not been activated, that helicopter would’ve gone into the ground and all four lives would’ve been lost,” said Jamie Luster, Director of Sales and Marketing at Genesys Aerosystems.
With thousands of Genesys autopilots in aircraft all over the world, it’s no surprise a system helped save lives. Still, for Luster, it was a fulfilling moment to hear just how critical the technology was in those harrowing moments.
“It’s not just about trying to bring a product to market, it’s trying to think, ‘What is really going to help a pilot in a situation, make him better or help him in a high-workload environment?’” she said. “Anything we can do to assist that pilot is our primary focus.”
Whether that’s an FAA-certified 3D Synthetic Vision EFIS or an autopilot system with potentially life-saving capability, Genesys continues to serve those who are most intimately involved in aviation.
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