Ready for Lift Off: Fairview Hospital Helipad will “Fly Neighborly”

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Pilot Richard Sandoval and Fairview Hospital President Dr. Neil P. Smith atop the hospital’s new helipad

Pilot Richard Sandoval and Fairview Hospital President Dr. Neil P. Smith atop the hospital’s new helipad

A new helipad atop Fairview Hospital will open during the month of June.

The opening marks the end of a controversy that was resolved when the Supreme Court of Ohio handed down a decision that favored the hospital over the City of Cleveland’s zoning concerns last year.

It is a decision that will benefit patients, according to Fairview Hospital President Dr. Neil P. Smith. “Time is critical in a life or death matter and as a hospital it is our responsibility to ensure our patients have access to the highest level of services when they need it,” said Dr. Smith as he hosted a tour of the new helipad for community leaders.

The helipad will connect Fairview Hospital with other medical facilities like the Cleveland Clinic Jacobs Center in Avon and the Cleveland Clinic downtown campus. Urgent delivery of care will save lives.

Operated by PHI Air Medical, LLC, the aircraft used will be a Sikorsky S-76C+, said Capt. and Pilot Richard Sandoval of PHI Air Medical, Inc. Flights will consist of two pilots, a nurse practitioner and a flight nurse.

Sandoval acknowledged that flight noise is generated by the craft, most significantly at ground level. But proposed aircraft routing to Fairview Hospital calls for “Fly Neighborly” paths over Metroparks areas and away from noise-sensitive residential neighborhoods.

Sandoval reports similar operations at CCF Medina, Twinsburg and other facilities have helped the company develop best-practice routing techniques. Noise complaints, he said, are often found to be caused by other aircraft when complaints are investigated.

As a result, Fairview Hospital and PHI are initiating a feedback loop from residents to flight operators to investigate noise complaints, systematically review procedures and communicate with other operators.


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