“Northwest Montana Air Support”
The executive board of Flathead Emergency Aviation Resources is proud to announce the public launch of a new public safety organization based in the Flathead Valley. Flathead Emergency Aviation Resources (F.E.A.R) is a non-profit, volunteer organization which provides air support to emergency service providers in the greater northwest region of Montana. We provide trained and qualified pilots and crew members specific to the type of flight operations we are requested to conduct. The aircraft we fly, which include helicopters and airplanes, are either owned by members or leased on an hourly basis.
The primary purpose of our organization and the air support we provide is to save time and lives. We recognize that saving time and lives provides a life-changing benefit to our community, but also has a profound impact on law enforcement professionals, public safety volunteers, and public funding sources. The benefits of aviation fit naturally with emergency response. Reducing exposure equates to less risk for victims and rescuers, and saving time means less impact on budgets or time spent away from loved ones. Our overhead visibility increases probability of detection while assuring those on the ground that help is on the way.
Sheriff’s offices in Montana have been using government, chartered, and medical aircraft for many years to support law enforcement and/or search and rescue operations. Utilization has been limited by cost and availability and, for the same reason, has rarely been included in the planning phase for natural disasters, tactical operations, or search and rescue incidents. Since 2008, F.E.A.R has been informally changing this perception by sharing the skills, experience, and resources required to conduct aerial public safety operations.
Aircraft ownership and the associated training, maintenance, and storage are expensive – especially specific to emergency operations. We believe the expense is worth the benefit, and we are certain there are community members willing to share the expenses our aircraft owners, pilots, and crew have been incurring. F.E.A.R is an approved 501c3 tax-exempt organization with a vision for the future. We are proud to partner with our fellow emergency responders in serving our friends and neighbors with new technology and resources. Our members and supporters choose to embrace the fear any of us could experience, directly or indirectly, when tragedy strikes by expediting the response of personnel and equipment.