11 Minutes Flying vs 3 Days Walking
It was lunch time when the Airvan touched down at Buluwo, a very poor community on the Sepik plains (in PNG).
Mid-way through the day’s program, pilot Richie Axon received confirmation that there was a patient at Buluwo desperately needing to go to the medical centre in Lumi. He had been working in the gardens and was cutting down a tree when it fell on him, causing internal injuries.
The patient however was not at the airstrip when the plane arrived. The people explained that he was coming from a nearby village – 4hrs walk away.
The patient arrived about 30 minutes later carried by 4 of the people from his village and accompanied by his wife, who would be looking after him.
Richie secured the patient and after just 11 minutes in the air, landed the Airvan P2-MEW in Lumi.
Thanks to this aircraft the man was able to receive medical help. If he was forced to go by foot, carried by his friends over the rough terrain, this trip would have taken 3 days – more than likely this would have been too long for him to survive.