A new air ambulance service will launch in Aberdeen next year to help save the lives of injured and seriously ill patients.
Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance (SCAA) revealed it has agreed a four-year contract with Babcock for the Helimed 79 aircraft.
It will operate from a new base at Aberdeen International Airport.
The SCAA has been operating Scotland’s first and only charity funded air ambulance helicopter service from its base at Perth Airport since 2013.
Staff have responded to more than 2,200 emergencies, transporting patients in need of urgent care to hospitals across the region.
The new helicopter has been secured as part of a major fundraising campaign.
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Chairman John Bullough said: “The launch of Helimed 79 in early 2020 will mark the culmination of a three-year strategy at SCAA to deliver a second charity-funded air ambulance for Scotland.
“Babcock has been with us since day one and we’re delighted to entrust them with flying us into the future.
“Helimed 79 will provide a whole new level of air ambulance support in the north-east and bring hope and help to those most in need in communities throughout Scotland.”
Babcock onshore director Richard Youngs said he expected the hard-working charity team to respond to hundreds of life-threatening emergencies from the new Aberdeen base each year.
He said: “The aircraft’s capabilities will also offer a lifeline to patients from remote communities who need help with medical transfers.”
Scottish Ambulance Service chief executive Pauline Howie said: “This new service from Aberdeen International Airport will help save lives, working alongside our two helicopters based at Inverness and Glasgow as an additional air resource.
“It will no doubt make a real difference to our patients, especially those in rural and remote areas in the north-east.”