Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Medical Helicopter
Waking the Neighbors

Back in May I wrote about my time spent in the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center Air Care Helicopter. But I didn't write specifically about it's noise and the little neighborhood that this Trauma center has grown up beside.

Air Care Helicopter

The crew told me about how they take off and land a certain way to minimize the effect on neighbors of their jet turbine noise and rotor whips at any given hour of the day.

AirCare (4)

Personally I love the sound of a life being saved, but some people get aggravated at something that interupts their routine, and of course most people love tranquility, I'm certainly not arguing that.

AirCare (5)

But out in Utah at the University of Utah the Medical Center Helipad has moved into a new neighborhood. Actually just to a different place on the hospital grounds, but nearer to student dorms.

Heather from Dooce saw this all unfold from her living room on the evening news. Her post titled, 'Just when I thought local news couldn't get any better' lauds the insanity of not only the hand wringing in the newsroom at such a great lead, but at the caring group of co-eds whose studying is being interupted.

About the newscast;

"They’re calling it “a conflict between life and death, a conflict between peace and quiet.” They had to choose between starting with this story or the one about a man who put his Chihuahua in the oven. I cannot possibly imagine the hand-wringing in the control room."

And the students;

"She complains that the Air Med helicopter is making so much noise that she can’t study. “The residents are really upset,” she says, “because we have this helicopter that’s moving in, and it’s very noisy. And they don’t want to make it any easier for us. We’re not being compensated for it.”

And her husband;

Jon instinctively pauses the TV, and we sit here blinking.
“Compensated,” I say nodding my head. “Like a gift certificate to Denny’s. That’d do it.”
Jon agrees. “I just don’t understand why those doctors have to save lives so loudly. Like, God!”

AirCare (35)

Luckily back here in North Carolina, the University's Medical Center and the Air Care helicopter are miles from the actual Campus.

And luckily the Utah situation is only temporary(6 to 8 months) until a renovation of the parking deck that the Helipad lands on is done. And they are keeping their other 5 helicopter at the airport.

News story link HERE

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