Air Zermatt rescuers on permanent duty over the holidays
The holidays are some of the busiest days of the year for Air Zermatt. At times, up to four Air Zermatt helicopters were in the air at the same time, whether for rescues, winter sports accidents or medical emergencies. However, it wasn't just the holidays that were intense, but the entire past year, as a look at the 2023 mission figures shows.
Air Zermatt crews were called out over the festive period. Between 23 December 2023 and 2 January 2024, Air Zermatt was called out on no fewer than 141 helicopter rescues. The 27 December was particularly busy. On this day alone, the rescue helicopters were called out on 26 missions. The helicopter crews mainly flew to the aid of winter sports enthusiasts who had suffered accidents, but also to medical emergencies. In addition, the Air Zermatt ambulances were called out on 98 missions during the same period.
However, it was not just the festive season that was intense for the air rescuers from Valais, but the entire past year. Air Zermatt's helicopters were called out on almost 2100 missions in 2023. This means that helicopter missions were very close to the previous year's level. Air Zermatt's ambulances were also deployed frequently last year. The ambulances were called out around 1,200 times last year, which corresponds to the number of missions from the previous year.
Highly operational not only in winter
Even though the winter months are intense for Air Zermatt, the rescue company had a lot to do during the summer. Air Zermatt's mission figures during the summer of 2023 are practically identical to the previous year, which went down in Air Zermatt's history as a record year. "In the summer months, Air Zermatt frequently recorded missions in connection with hiking and mountain accidents," says Günther Willisch, Co-Head of the Air Zermatt Rescue Service. "The unusually warm summer attracted numerous alpinists and hikers to higher regions." The frequency of operations for hiking and mountain accidents during the summer was correspondingly high, explains Willisch. In addition, more and more people have discovered their passion for biking since the beginning of the coronavirus era. As a result, Air Zermatt was also increasingly involved in providing medical assistance to injured mountain bikers over the course of the summer.
Change of leadership at Valais Air Rescue
On New Year's Day, Daniel Aufdenblatten took the helm as the new CEO of Air Zermatt. This change of leadership marks a significant step for the future of the company. Daniel Aufdenblatten brings with him extensive experience and expertise and will make a significant contribution to the further development and success story of Air Zermatt.
Air Zermatt would like to thank Gerold Biner for his outstanding leadership and commitment during his 40-year career at Air Zermatt.