The establishment of an air ambulance service at Hannibal Regional Airport is on hold until the helicopter that Survivor Flight plans to use receives the approval of the Federal Aviation Administration. That news was shared by George Walley, chairman of the Airport Advisory Board, during Wednesday morning's board meeting at the airport.
Because modifications are necessary to a helicopter for it to be usable as an medical transportation vehicle, it must be certified by the FAA.
Following Wednesday's meeting, Walley reported that Survivor Flight is hopeful of receiving the FAA's blessing "any day."
In the meantime, Survivor Flight has already hired personnel to man the helicopter. They reportedly make regular visits to the Hannibal airport.
Although the City Council must still give a final reading to a commercial land use agreement with Survival Flight, the company already has city hall's permission to place a 24-foot by 60-foot crew trailer at the airport. The crew trailer will be used until it can build a permanent facility of its own.
If the air service is certified to begin flying before the crew trailer arrives, Walley indicated Survivor Flight might begin working out of the terminal. One limitation would be the crew could not sleep in the building. Consequently, Survivor Flight's three person crew could initially begin working 8-hour shifts, rather than extended shifts. Even when operating out of the terminal the service will be available 24 hours a day.