Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), page 593

Index   592 -- Page 593 -- 594

12/10/15                                                                                                        AIM

     5. The tail rotor poses a special threat to              the contamination of the crew. Patients/victims
working around a running helicopter. The tail rotor           contaminated by hazardous materials may require
turns many times faster than the main rotor, and is           special precautions in packaging before loading on
often invisible even at idle engine power. Avoid              the aircraft for the medical crew's protection, or may
walking towards the tail of a helicopter beyond the           be transported by other means.
end of the cabin, unless specifically directed by the
crew.                                                              4. Hazardous chemicals and gases may be fatal
                                                              to the unprotected person if inhaled or absorbed
NOTE-                                                         through the skin.
Helicopters typically have doors on the sides of the cabin,
but many use aft mounted "clamshell" type doors for                5. Upon initial radio contact, the helicopter crew
loading and unloading patients on litters or stretchers.      must be made aware of any hazardous gases in the
When using these doors, it is important to avoid moving any   area. Never assume that the crew has already been
further aft than necessary to operate the doors and           informed. If the aircraft were to fly through the
load/unload the patient. Again, always comply with the        hazardous gases, the crew could be poisoned and/or
crew's instructions.
                                                              the engines could develop mechanical problems.
  j. General Rules
                                                                   6. Poisonous or irritating gases may cling to a
     1. When working around helicopters, always               victim's clothing and go unnoticed until the patient is
approach and depart from the front, never from the            loaded and the doors of the helicopter are closed. To
rear. Approaching from the rear can increase your risk        avoid possible compromise of the crew, all of these
of being struck by the tail rotor, which, when at             patients must be decontaminated prior to loading.
operating engine speed, is nearly invisible.
                                                                l. Hand Signals
     2. To prevent injury or damage from the main
rotor, never raise anything over your head.                      1. If unable to make radio contact with the
                                                              HEMS pilot, use the following signals:
    3. If the helicopter landed on a slope, approach
and depart from the down slope side only. FIG 10-2-8 4. When the helicopter is loaded and ready for Recommended Landing Zone Ground Signals take off, keep the departure path free of vehicles and spectators. In an emergency, this area is needed to execute a landing. k. Hazardous Chemicals and Gases 1. Responding to accidents involving hazardous materials requires special handling by fire/rescue units on the ground. Equally important are the preparations and considerations for helicopter operations in these areas. 2. Hazardous materials of concern are those which are toxic, poisonous, flammable, explosive, irritating, or radioactive in nature. Helicopter ambulance crews normally don't carry protective suits or breathing apparatuses to protect them from hazardous materials. 3. The helicopter ambulance crew must be told of hazardous materials on the scene in order to avoid Special Operations 10-2-15

Page 593 of the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM.pdf)
AIM: Official Guide to Basic Flight Information and ATC Procedures

Index   592 -- Page 593 -- 594