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Angel Flight seeks additional pilots

After seeing a sharp increase in demand since getting a new aircraft, Angel Flight East Kotenay is looking to bring more volunteer pilots on board.

Brent Bidston, Angel Flight founder and board vice-chair said the organization has been able to take more passengers thanks to a new aircraft.

“We had plateaued at about 100 to 110 passengers a year using our single-engine aircraft, just because the weather restricted the number of days we could fly,” said Bidston. “The RDEK stepped up wonderfully and allowed us to purchase a much more reliable airplane.”

Angel Flight East Kootenay is a volunteer organization that gives residents free flights to and from non-emergency medical appointments in Kelowna, Trail, and Penticton

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Bidston said the new plane, which can take five people at a time, has been a welcomed addition.

“We are now flying reliably three days a week. We went from 110 patients in 2021 to 570 in 2022 and we’re on track to easily match that this year,” said Bidston.

He noted that the week of May 8 to 12 has been their busiest week ever, with 25 passengers being flown to appointments.

Bidston said Angel Flight is seeking out more volunteer pilots to improve the organization.

“We now need pilots with a twin (engine) rating and an instrument rating to operate this better aircraft. We really need to find one or two more to enable us to keep operating at our current standards,” said Bidston.

Anyone interested in volunteering can contact Angel Flight East Kootenay through the link below.

More: Angel Flight East Kootenay

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