The Royal Flying Doctor Service (Queensland Section) (RFDS) has agreed to purchase four Beechcraft King Air 360CHW turboprop aircraft, with an option to purchase an additional two aircraft. The new aircraft will add to their already large fleet of Beechcraft King Air aircraft. Deliveries are expected to begin in 2021 and continue through 2023. The Beechcraft King Air 360 is designed and manufactured by Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. company.
“By providing a wide range of essential healthcare services to regional, rural and remote communities, the mission scope of the RFDS requires 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week operational availability for the vast territory of the state of Queensland,” said Bob Gibbs, vice president, Special Missions Sales. “We are honored that the RFDS, in evaluating its choices for this fleet, continues to choose the Beechcraft King Air as the platform of choice for these crucial operations.”
The six Beechcraft King Air turboprops, configured for multi-stretcher air ambulance operations, will be equipped with a factory installed aft cargo door, heavy weight operations package and Pratt and Whitney PT6A-67A engines for additional performance capabilities. With its corporate office located within the Brisbane Airport precinct, the RFDS currently operates 20 aircraft across eight operational bases located at Brisbane, Cairns, Townsville, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Charleville, Mount Isa and Roma.
The King Air, the most popular twin-turboprop model in Australia, provides unrivaled performance in terms of operational cost, speed and runway access throughout Queensland. Textron Aviation supports nearly 200 King Air aircraft in a variety of configurations throughout Australia.
“The King Air is the world leader in twin-turboprop special missions because of the aircraft’s unmatched capabilities and reliability,” added Gibbs. “Continuing to be a trusted supplier for emergency services in Australia is a testament to the King Air’s performance when every minute matters.”
RFDS (Queensland Section) Chief Executive Officer Meredith Staib said it was vital that the Service, one of the world’s largest and most comprehensive aeromedical organisations, remained “future fit” as it neared 100 years of operation. “The Beechcraft King Air 360 aircraft forms a key part of our 10-year aircraft replacement strategy, which will ensure we can continue to deliver world-class aeromedical retrievals and healthcare to regional, rural and remote Australians,” she said.
“Our highly trained and skilled aviation staff are looking forward to experiencing the technology advances offered with the B360, including improved performance and efficiency, ultimately improving runway access. I am sure our medical crews and patients will also enjoy the enhanced flying experience.”
About the Beechcraft King Air 360CHW
The King Air 360CHW aircraft is a version of the King Air 360 twin-engine turboprop aircraft configured with an optional cargo door and heavy weight operations package, resulting in enhanced mission flexibility. Two Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-60A or optional factory installed PT6A-67A turboprop engines with Hartzell four blade propellers power the King Air 360CHW aircraft, and a fully integrated Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion digital avionics suite provides pilot(s) with state-of-the-art touchscreen controls.