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Dysart Fire, Ambulance team up for AirCare training

September 6, 2019
CJ Eilers - Editor ( , Dysart Reporter

The Dysart Fire Department and Ambulance Department held a joint training for helicopter rescue on Thursday, Aug. 29, including a lecture and landing training in town.

"They did this training over in Garrison and few of us participated, but we were talking about if we ever need to land a helicopter for someone here," Julie Scadden, Ambulance Director said. "We talked about what would it involved and how we'd go about doing this. The Fire Dept indicated they hadn't had training on how to set up a landing zone."

For the helicopter landing, behind the bus barn at Union Middle School was selected by Scadden due to the open space a lack of debris. Scadden added the football field would be another spot in town a helicopter could land.

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Members of the Dysart Ambulance and Fire Departments took part in helicopter training on Thursday, Aug. 29 in town.

"A lot of this has to do with wanting to work with the ambulance a little closer and what they're wants on for when a helicopter lands," Tim Brown, Fire Chief said. "We need to learn the requirements as far as spacing and what we need to teach ourselves to do."

According to Scadden, helicopter training is performed to familiarize first responders with new models of helicopters or new regulations. Before the helicopter landing, both departments did a classroom training going over the capabilities of the helicopter, what both departments need to do for support and clearing the land zone for the helicopter. AirCare will be called to the scene in the case of bad trauma, burns, cardiac issues or other life-threatening situations."

"It needs to be said how vital it is law enforcement and fire are involved in this," Scadden said. "Ambulance is taking care of the patient and someone needs to be in constant contact with the helicopter while it's coming in, and another person setting up the grid. It's more of Fire's responsibility to set this up."

The AirCare helicopter came from Waterloo, the closest available. However, a helicopter may be called from Cedar Rapids or Iowa City. First responders were given a tour of the helicopter and even a few members went up in the craft.

"I'm glad the Fire Department is a part of this training," Brown said. "It's the first time I've been a part of it and it helps out the department. You don't get to see these up close often. Everything is different and interesting."

The training is part of both Dysart department's efforts to work more closely together. The public was informed of the training, with a small crowd of spectators watching from the middle school parking lot.

"It's so cool we're all working together on this and there's such a public safety grouping now in Dysart for the betterment of the community," Scadden said. "When you call them to the scene, you don't have time to learn about a helicopter."



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