24-Hour Communications Center

​A physician, nurse or member of an authorized public safety agency may request emergency air medical services by calling toll free 1.800.426.2430 or 206.329.2569 from Seattle. 


Where is the landing zone?

Is it a non-designated or designated landing zone? A school, parking lot, roadway intersection? This information, along with map page coordinates and GPS coordinates, if available, helps the pilot locate the scene and land safely.

Who is the ground contact?

Ground contact is used for direct two-way communication with the pilot and the landing zone coordinator, such as an aide unit or engine company. Preferably, the ground contact should be on site, coordinating the landing zone.

What radio frequency can Airlift Northwest use for ground contact?

The pilot will dial in the established radio frequency as the aircraft nears the landing zone. It is important for requestors to know their frequency numbers and if there is a Private Line (PL) associated with it. If agencies operate in the field with a PL and the pilot does not have that PL, the pilot will not be able to communicate with the landing zone coordinator.

The preferred frequencies are: 
  • 800 MHz-State Ops 1 preferred (if available) or
  • VHF-TAC frequency preferred — primary frequency may be too busy

What is the response type?

The 24-Hour Communications Center​ needs only a brief description of the patient and situation for a pre-hospital transport.

"Adult trauma… pediatric near drowning… high-risk OB… MVA… gunshot wound" provides sufficient information for dispatch — and gives Airlift Northwest and the receiving facility an idea of what to expect and how to prepare. 

Who is the receiving hospital?

The pre-hospital provider, in conjunction with his or her medical control, should determine the appropriate receiving hospital. The 24-Hour Communications Center communicates with the receiving hospital as soon as possible so that the hospital can:

  • Have sufficient and specialized staff on site to care for the patient
  • Ensure the landing pad will be ready to receive the helicopter
  • Arrange for ground transportation from the helipad, if needed

What is the weather like at the landing zone?

While it may be clear and dry at the point of takeoff, the landing zone may be fogged or snowed in. Typical weather questions asked by the Airlift Northwest 24-Hour Communications Center are:
  • What is the estimated ceiling?
  • Can you see the tops of the trees? The stars?
  • Is it snowing?
  • Name of the person requesting transport
  • Referring hospital phone number
  • Your telephone number, with area code and extension
  • Referring hospital and physician
  • Receiving hospital and physician
  • Name, age and weight of patient
  • Patient information – the patient's diagnosis, vital signs and medications – to help Airlift Northwest determine if any special equipment or supplies not normally carried on the aircraft are necessary. These could include blood products, an isolette, traction device or pacemaker.
Weather conditions at your facility. During certain times of the year, weather conditions can vary and affect the ability to land an aircraft at your facility or a nearby landing area. The 24-Hour Communications Center may ask for a description of weather conditions at your facility. Is it foggy or snowing? Can you see the tops of the trees, the stars?

Your assistance in providing this essential information will ensure the best possible outcome for patients. 

All aviation services, pilots and mechanics are provided by Air Methods Corporation and Aero Air. ​​​