Blog
Categories
© Tirol Werbung / Rodler Ilvy
Food & Drink
© Tirol Werbung / Hörterer Lisa
Companies
© Bert Heinzelmeier
People
© Tirol Werbung / Schreyer David
Architecture
© Tirol Werbung / Aichner Bernhard
Arts & Culture
© Tirol Werbung / Moore Casey
Recommendations
© Tirol Werbung / Haindl Ramon
Feel Good
© Tirol Werbung / Webhofer Mario
Nature
© Tirol Werbung / Herbig Hans
Family
© Tirol Werbung / Schwarz Jens
Bits & Pieces
© Tirol Werbung / Neusser Peter
Sports
Jagdhausalmen Alpine Pastures, Defereggen, East Tirol, Austria, Europe
Specials

The Reutte Helicopter Rescue Team

Updated on 13.11.2019 in People

Flugrettung_3

Searches for lost hikers, ski accidents or broken legs—when the location is remote and challenging in and around the mountains of Reutte, RK-2 helicopter’s rescue team is called upon. On board is Florian Selb who volunteers his time and expertise in the service of people who need assistance.

They are drinking coffee, talking to each other while waiting for their first call. When I sat down with the flight crew of the Reutte operating base I soon recognized that they have been working together for years. That day, the crew has been on duty since 6:30am and their shift would last until sunset. The base at Reutte operates the state-of-the-art RK-2 helicopter, which is specifically designed to meet the requirements of challenging search and rescue (SAR) missions – it is a beautiful looking ship in red and white. The life flight rescue team is always on call, with typical missions taking place late in the afternoon.

When speed to hospital is critical or when the location is remote or challenging in and around the mountains of Reutte, ARA flight’s rescue team is called upon. The rescue helicopter serves the greater Reutte area within a radius of 50 kilometers, averaging over 1,000 missions per year. As the border to Germany is very close, they also support emergency calls outside of Austria in Germany’s Bavaria when their assistance is needed.

The brand-new „H 145“ helicopter responds to a multitude of SAR mission needs.The brand-new „H 145“ helicopter responds to a multitude of SAR mission needs.

The biggest cause of ski accidents is people pushing themselves beyond their ability.”

In the winter, when ski season is in full swing, the majority of missions are ski accidents. “The biggest cause of ski accidents is people pushing themselves beyond their ability,” says Florian Selb. The 27-year old grew up in Lechtal Valley in the Tirolean District of Reutte and spent much of his time hiking, climbing and skiing the mountains. He is voluntarily dedicating his time and skill, assisting the Reutte flight rescue team in all kinds of search and rescue efforts. His expertise and skill as a mountain rescue team member is of great importance in the notoriously challenging conditions found in the mountainous terrain. Apart from Florian, the helicopter crew consists of full time salaried members, including a pilot, an emergency physician and a winch operator.

Florian Selb is one of 12 volunteers who man a roster at the Reutte operating base.Florian Selb is one of 12 volunteers who man a roster at the Reutte operating base.

The RK-2 SAR helicopter also supports emergency calls outside of Austria in Germany’s Bavaria when needed.The RK-2 SAR helicopter also supports emergency calls outside of Austria in Germany’s Bavaria when needed.

A Massive Team Effort

“Our team is made up of highly trained, passionate and dedicated people. The service that we provide is a massive team effort. It takes significant training and preparation. We simulate emergency situations to improve and we constantly seek to refine our skills to the point of mastery, especially when it comes to rescue operations requiring the winch,” says pilot Jörg Strauß. The state-of-the-art RK-2 SAR helicopter is fitted with a rescue winch. This enables emergency physicians and paramedics being winched out of the helicopter during rescue missions and providing life-saving care to patients in remote places where the helicopter can’t land.

The Air Medical Rescue Team

The Austrian Air Medical Rescue Team brings the hospital to the patient when time is critical. The most common incidents they attend include road traffic collisions, emergencies and mountain incidents. In winter, they predominantly conduct mountain rescues of skiers. Seven helicopters are spread out through Tirol all year round. Their mission: provide rapid response and transportation for patients in critical condition. Rescue operations are mainly coordinated by the Austrian ÖAMTC Automobile Association and the Red Cross; on top of it there are privately owned helicopter rescue companies.

The cabin is equipped with a full line of medical equipment.The cabin is equipped with a full line of medical equipment.

The ability to help people in need is the best part of my job.”

The RK-2 helicopter carries a pilot, an emergency physician, an operator for winch and a member of the mountain rescue team.The RK-2 helicopter carries a pilot, an emergency physician, an operator for winch and a member of the mountain rescue team.

It’s Very Rewarding

“Like any emergency services work, you’re often with people during their most difficult moments, which can be hard. However, the ability to help those people in need is the best part of my job. The feeling of being part of a successful team contributing to saving lives is extremely rewarding,” says Florian Selb. He especially appreciates when people write him to say thank you. “It’s good to hear that people who were originally at death’s door can walk out of hospital and go back to their lives.”

ARA Flight Rescue

The abbreviation “RK-2“ (“Rotes Kreuz-2” – Red Cross 2) stands for the SAR helicopter that is based at the district hospital of Reutte. RK-2 is operated by ARA Flight Rescue in conjunction with the Austrian ARBÖ Automobile Association.

After the mission is before the next mission.After the mission is before the next mission.

It takes a lot to be a Member of the Life Flight Crew

When they are not on duty, the volunteer crew members are all avid outdoorsmen who love playing in the mountains. However, to be a member of the RK-2 team requires significant skill, dedication and physical fitness. “It takes a lot to be a member of the life flight crew. They must be experienced members of the mountain rescue and trained paramedics. Yet the rewards are also unlike a typical volunteer experience. Members are an integral part of a highly trained team. They are all committed to many years of service with us. They support us until they retire,” declares Jörg Strauß.

Suddenly the team receives a rescue call. The rescue coordination center at Innsbruck sends the request to the Reutte operating base for dispatch. The destination is noted, helmets are put on, the necessary equipment for the job is gathered, the helicopter is started and the crew swiftly gets on board. Two minutes after the alert, the RK-2 is in the air.

Video: Florian Selb on Duty

Photo Credits: Bert Heinzlmeier

Having worked overseas for years, Klaus Brunner came back home to explore Tirol with camera and microphone in tow. Home is where your heart is.

Last article from Klaus
Summer solstice fires in Tirol
Updated on 14.06.2021 in Arts & Culture
Summer solstice fires in Tirol
5 min reading time
A wonderfully crispy dessert from Tirol that is fun to make at home: “Strauben”
Updated on 27.05.2021 in Food & Drink
“Strauben”: The Original Recipe to Try at Home
3 min reading time
Apfelradln_1_klein
Updated on 06.04.2021 in Food & Drink
„Apfelradln“: Enjoy the Taste of Tirol at Home
2 min reading time
Tirol_Bier-21_klein
Updated on 23.03.2021 in Food & Drink
The top beers from Tirol
8 min reading time
Updated on 19.03.2021 in Recommendations
Ten Virtual Museums and Guided Tours in Tirol
5 min reading time
Paragleiter Hohe Salve
Updated on 02.03.2021 in Recommendations
Top Ten Places for a Virtual Visit to Tirol
3 min reading time
TW Berufe Mayrhofen  – Penken Harakiri Die steilste Piste Öster
Updated on 14.01.2021 in People
Making Corduroy: The Ski Groomer on Harakiri Run
4 min reading time
Titelbild_Kathrein_Musig
Updated on 07.12.2020 in Arts & Culture
Playlist: Top 7 Christmas Carols from Tirol
4 min reading time
Stams_Stamser Alm
Updated on 16.11.2020 in Food & Drink
Superfood from Tirol: “Graukäse” and “Zieger”
5 min reading time
Herrlich
Updated on 02.07.2020 in Food & Drink
Buchteln: A Sweet Treat from Tirol
4 min reading time
Innsbruck, Nordkette
Updated on 28.05.2020 in Arts & Culture
Climb Every Mountain: Summit Crosses in Tirol
3 min reading time
Wirthsaus zum Griena, „Große Stube“, Mayrhofen
Updated on 27.04.2020 in Arts & Culture
Loud and Proud: Folk Music from Tirol
2 min reading time
St. Anton am Arlberg, Mooserwirt
Updated on 26.03.2020 in Arts & Culture
Music in Tirol: From Rock to Reggae
2 min reading time
1
Updated on 02.03.2020 in Recommendations
Ask a Local: Fieberbrunn
5 min reading time
They made it to the finish line of the Ski Trail in Tannheim. Photo by Tirol Werbung / Charly Schwarz
Updated on 02.01.2020 in Recommendations
Five Nordic Ski Races for Everyone
3 min reading time
Adventmarkt Seefeld, Christbaumschmuck
Updated on 09.12.2019 in Recommendations
Ten Christmas Presents from Tirol
4 min reading time
TirolWerbung_930127
Updated on 30.11.2019 in Recommendations
5 Ski Resorts Easily Accessible by Train
3 min reading time
19-10-20 Tirol Werbung – Herbst Rezepte_92_klein
Updated on 22.11.2019 in Food & Drink
Best Potato Recipes: Apple Potato Tart
3 min reading time
_DSF1999_klein
Updated on 07.11.2019 in Food & Drink
Wine from Tirol: when vines begin to climb
6 min reading time
Christine Silberberger from Auffach – the Wildschönau native truly loves her home region.
Updated on 06.10.2019 in Recommendations
Ask a Local: Wildschönau
5 min reading time
The Alpine ibex (Capra ibex) is a species of wild goat that lives in Austria’s Hohe Tauern National Park
Updated on 27.09.2019 in Nature
Hohe Tauern National Park: A Rich and Varied History
4 min reading time
Along the Stubai High Trail (c) Tirol Werbung
Updated on 19.08.2019 in Sports
Five Epic Long-Distance Trails for Tireless Hikers
4 min reading time
Delicious „Brettljausn“ at Burger Alm in Rettenschöss (c) Tirol Werbung – Frank Bauer
Updated on 27.06.2019 in Food & Drink
Five Walks for Foodies
4 min reading time
Oberried Climbing Area in Ötztal Valley. Photo Credit: Tirol Werbung
Updated on 18.06.2019 in Sports
Five Rock Climbing Areas for All Ages
3 min reading time
Jagdhausalmen Alpine Pastures, Defereggen, East Tirol, Austria, Europe
Updated on 03.06.2019 in Nature
Five Photo-Worthy Locales to Dazzle Your Followers
4 min reading time
A scenic mountain walk coupled with indulgent gastronomic experiences: Burgeralm. PHOTO CREDIT: FRANK BAUER
Updated on 16.04.2019 in Food & Drink
Burgeralm: A Haven for Cheese Lovers
4 min reading time
Updated on 05.03.2019 in People
The Village Lift of Navis
6 min reading time
Eddie-the-Eagle-zuschnitt(c)-Tirol-Werbung—Erich-Spiess
Updated on 05.03.2019 in People
Eddie the Eagle in Tirol
6 min reading time
DJ Gerhard Schmiderer at the Mooserwirt Après Ski Bar in St Anton.
Updated on 12.02.2019 in People
The DJ at the Mother of all Après Ski Bars
5 min reading time
Updated on 24.01.2019 in Nature
Five Walks for Snow Lovers
3 min reading time
Updated on 15.01.2019 in Bits & Pieces
Five Winter Fun Activities for Kids
4 min reading time
Gasthof Gemse in Zams
Updated on 14.12.2018 in Bits & Pieces
Five Cozy Fine-Dining Gems in Tirol
3 min reading time
Exterior view with Jesuit Church | Photo Credits: Günther Egger
Updated on 11.12.2018 in Architecture
The New “House of Music” in Innsbruck
3 min reading time
titelbild
Updated on 19.09.2018 in Recommendations
Infinite Freedom: Gliding in Tirol
4 min reading time
Wörgl, Bahnhof, Abfahrtsanzeige
Updated on 12.09.2018 in Recommendations
Bike carriage with public transport in Tirol
6 min reading time
Westendorf, Hinterwindau, Käsealm Straubing
Updated on 25.04.2018 in Sports
eMTB Riding Tips & Techniques for Beginners
3 min reading time
Working in the Ski Resort: Josef Geisler, General Manager of Mayrhofen Ski Resort
25.05.2021 in People
Lord of the Harakiri
4 min reading time
Dolomiten Hut in East Tirol. Photo by TVB Osttirol
28.04.2021 in Recommendations
Five Unforgettable Places to Stay
3 min reading time
2Copyright instagram MEINESICHTDERDINGE
19.04.2021 in Recommendations
Ask a Local: Innsbruck
4 min reading time
tirol werbung-hofgarten-blanchard-9787
12.04.2021 in People
The Keepers of the Hohe Salve Mountain
6 min reading time
Photo Credit: Tirol Werbung
31.03.2021 in Sports
Five Best Mountain Bike Rides for Explorers
4 min reading time
Upstream Surfing, River Surfing, Surfing Tirol, Inn
24.06.2019 in Sports
Upstream Surfing in Tirol
4 min reading time
All articles from Klaus
No comments available
Write comment

Keep reading

Go up
Is your inbox in need of a holiday?

Then subscribe to our weekly newsletter full of exclusive holiday tips from Tirol!