Following many years of campaigning for a rescue helicopter service for Northern NSW the service was officially launched in Ballina December 1982.
In the 30 years since this historic beginning the Service has seen huge changes in technology, personnel, operations and fundraising.
One thing which has been constant is the overwhelming support the rescue helicopter has continued to receive from our community and business sectors. Without this the Service would not have survived and continue to deliver a fast, efficient, free of charge aero-medical service that has now saved over 6500 lives across our region.
Service commenced at Ballina SLSC, as fifth SLSA service established in Australia with a Hillier UH-12E.
Service permanently relocated to Lismore, with a Bell 206B Jetranger on lease.
SLSA took over Service and provided a replacement Bell Jetranger
Base moved to Lismore Airport on trail basis
Bell Longranger replaced the smaller Bell Jetranger. The current base was occupied for the first time in late
Twin engine Dauphin AS365C helicopter purchased to expand operational responsiveness and capability.
Second Dauphin AS365C purchased and Service commences 24 hour a day operations/ 365 days. Critically, by having a back up aircraft this provided exceptional availability for our Community aero-medical work.
Twin engine Dauphin AS365N helicopter purchased with extended speed range and load capabilities.
Second Dauphin AS365N helicopter purchased to complete 10 year capital re-investment programme. Remaining AS365C is retired from service.
Ambulance Service NSW commenced trial to station paramedics on base during daylight hours. Service commences planning for joint initiative with Department of Health to establish an Australasian College for Emergency Medicine residency at the Base.
First Doctor under Emergency Medicine Residency commences at Base, elevating clinical responsiveness for Service. Since 2009, 6 doctors have undertaken the programme through the NRHRS.
Night Vision Goggle technology introduced to service, increasing Service capability in primary response and search response in poor light conditions.