How many crew members are on the helicopter?

Three Crew Members—two critical care providers and one pilot

What kind of helicopter does the program currently fly?

The program currently flies a Eurocopter EC-145.

See our program and fleet history here

How fast do you generally fly?

We cruise at approximately 150 miles/hour

How many patients are transported at one time?

We carry one patient at a time; they are very ill patients and require an intense level of patient care.

How far do you fly?

We cover all of North Carolina, and parts of South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.

What training is required to become a Duke Life Flight Critical Care Provider?

Please see our employment section for details.

Do critical care providers fly the helicopter?

No. Our critical care providers generally have no flight training. Our Life Flight Pilots are extremely experienced with thousands of hours of flight training.

See additional details about Life Flight staff here.

What equipment do you carry on the helicopter?

We carry many of the things you wouldd find in an ICU including a ventilator, emergency release packed red blood cells, five channel cardiac monitor/defibrillator, multiple drugs, airway supplies and kits for placing specialized airways or modified chest tubes.

Where do you land at Duke University Hospital?

We land on one of our two roof top helipads at Duke University Hospital

Do your pilots work for Duke?

No, our pilots and mechanics are provided by Air Methods, based in Colorado.

What is the maximum weight of a patient you can fly?

350lbs is the maximum weight, due to limitations of our stretcher.

Who staffs your ambulances?

Ambulances are staffed by the appropriate combination of nurses, paramedics, respiratory therapists or EMTs.

Do your trucks transport the same types of patients as the aircraft?

Yes, our trucks transport the same types of patients as the aircraft when we are unable to fly.

Do you have a ride-a-long program?

Yes, please see our ride-a-long section for more information.

Do you allow tours of your aircraft and helipads?

Please contact our administrative staff at 1-800-362-5433 to arrange a tour of the aircraft and helipad.


 For questions not answered by the above information, please contact the Duke Life Flight office at 1-(800)-362-5433 or via email at