Aviation safety issues and actions

Role of the Ambulance Service of NSW specialty casualty access team

Issue number: AO-2011-166-SI-02
Who it affects: Ambulance Service of NSW specialty casualty access team
Issue owner: Ambulance Service of NSW
Transport function: Aviation: Other
Background: Investigation Report AO-2011-166
Issue release date: 16 May 2013

Safety issue description

The increased capability of helicopters and rescue winches enabled the conduct of complex winch rescues beyond the current level of winch training and procedural support associated with the traditional special casualty access team clinical access role, leading to an increased risk that hazards associated with complex rescues were not identified.

Proactive Action

Action number: AO-2011-166-NSA-039
Action organisation: Ambulance Service of New South Wales
Date: 16 May 2013
Action status: Closed

In response to this accident ASNSW has:

  • through its Statewide Services Division, introduced a mission governance procedure to ensure appropriate resources are supplied to support helicopter rescue missions
  • through its Control Division, strengthened procedures to ensure supervisors and all appropriate agencies are notified, and dispatched, to missions involving a helicopter rescue or SCAT response
  • undertaken an external review of its command and control procedures
  • arranged to present the safety issue to the New South Wales State Rescue Board for consideration.
Last update 02 December 2019