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Sanford AirMed Information

Sanford AirMed is a critical care air ambulance service providing helicopter, fixed-wing and ground ambulance transports throughout the region, 48 contiguous states and Canada in a safe and cost effective manner.

Transport Vehicles

Transport Vehicles

Sanford AirMed is proud to serve the region with four EC-145 helicopters and four king air B200 fixed wing aircraft.

In addition to lifesaving medical equipment, the EC-145 helicopters and fixed wing aircraft have specialized navigational systems for enhanced flight safety. Global Positioning Systems (GPS) in each aircraft allows for pilots to determine their exact position and distance from their destination. All aircraft are outfitted with the latest in traffic avoidance, terrain awareness and weather radar technologies.

American Eurocopter EC-145 Helicopter

  • Sanford's aircraft are new from the factory with bases in Sioux Falls, Fargo and Bemidji.
  • Four pilots and two mechanics at each aircraft base
  • Single Pilot IFR (Instrument Flight Rules)
  • Night Vision Goggles
  • 30 second shut down
  • Twin engine
  • Rear loading for crew and patient safety
  • Large, open cabin area to provide patient care in flight
  • Two patient capacity
  • Max speed 167 mph
  • Max range 425 miles

Beechcraft King Air 200's

  • Available 24/7/365
  • Aircraft bases in Sioux Falls, Fargo and Dickinson
  • Dual pilot IFR (Instrument Flight Rules)
  • Average speed 300 mph
  • Range 1500 miles
  • Short runway capability
  • Two patient capability
  • 2-5 critical care attendants
  • Lifeport custom interiors

Specialized Flight Teams & Pilots and Mechanics

Specialized Flight Teams & Pilots and Mechanics

Sanford AirMed is composed of four specialized flight teams – adult, neonatal, OB, and pediatric – with advanced training in cardiac, trauma, burns, pediatric, OB and neonatal critical care. All teams transport in the helicopter, fixed wing and ground. In addition, Sanford AirMed employs a staff of full time pilots and mechanics to operate and maintain all aircraft.

Adult Team

The adult team consists of registered nurses and flight paramedics with extensive training in the care of the critically ill and traumatized patients. A Respiratory Therapist is available, if needed. The adult team transports medical and trauma patients 15 years and older and responds to all scene response calls regardless of age. When not flying, the adult team members provide support within the hospital to the Emergency Department, Critical Care Units and other areas needing assistance. The team provides care based on established protocols, and is directed by the Emergency Department Physician when on transport.

Neonatal Team

The neonatal team consists of registered nurses and neonatal nurse practitioners. A Respiratory Therapist is available to accompany the team, if needed. The neonatal team transports all critically ill newborns. The Intensive Care Nursery team works in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and is directed on transport by the neonatologist.

OB Team

The OB team consists of registered nurses with high-risk obstetrical care experience. The team consists of a Labor and Delivery flight nurse and a flight medic transporting all OB patients. A combination Intensive Care Nursery/OB team is often utilized to care for mother and baby if delivery is imminent. A Respiratory Therapist is available, if requested. A Perinatologist directs the team with experience in high-risk pregnancies.

Pediatric Team

The pediatric team consists of Pediatric flight registered nurses from the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and a Flight Paramedic. A Respiratory Therapist is also available, if needed. The Pediatric Team transports pediatric patients age 14 and under. A Pediatric Intensivist directs the pediatric flight team on all medical transports.

Pilots and Mechanics

Sanford AirMed employs a staff of full time pilots and mechanics to operate and maintain all aircraft. All aviation employees are trained in their particular specialties. Fixed wing pilots are all ATP (Airline Transport Pilot) rated and fly in a Co-Captain environment. Rotor wing pilots have extensive experience from both civilian and military backgrounds. All pilots and mechanics receive initial and annual training. Pilots attend annual simulator training at either Flight Safety International or Simuflite. Mechanics attend training at factory approved training facilities.

Communications Center

Communications Center

All aircraft are dispatched from a centralized communication center where dispatchers use the latest in dispatch technology and are responsible for the coordination of transporting the patient and team to their final destination. Their commitment is to make the transport a safe and efficient transport for the patients.



Safety is the foundation of Sanford AirMed. We are dedicated to creating, implementing, maintaining and constantly improving strategies and processes in our air medical activities. We are committed to fostering a safety culture in which all team members are engaged in the practice and promotion of quality, accountability and safety. Our success will be influenced by this philosophy: Every patient, every flight, every first.

Landing Zone Safety

AirMed Safety Training

Sanford AirMed offers safety training. Interested parties can fill out this form for more information.