Naming ceremony introduces new aircraft into CareFlight’s Top End fleet

Monday 5 February 2018, Darwin

CareFlight recently introduced their newest King Air turbo-prop aircraft into the Aeromedical Retrieval Service’s Top End fleet. The official naming ceremony saw CareFlight personnel, Larrakia Nation and the Lord Mayor of Darwin jointly celebrate CareFlight’s newest addition. 

Air Ambulance CareFlight 29 – which will now be known as ‘City of Darwin – Garramilla’ – standardises CareFlight Northern Operations fleet, increases the service’s capacity and makes CareFlight stronger for all Territorians. 

“Traditionally aircraft are named after significant people, but with the input of Lord Mayor Kon Vatskalis, we chose ‘City of Darwin – Garramilla’, a name that honours our entire community,” CareFlight Northern Operations General Manager Craig Gibbons said. 

“Garramilla – the Larrakia name for the porcellanite white rock that underlies all of Darwin – illustrates and highlights the close ties CareFlight has with the Indigenous people across the region.”

Darwin Lord Mayor Kon Vatskalis said he was proud to carry out CareFlight 29’s official naming ceremony. 

“In December 2011 – when I was the NT Minister for Health – I proudly opened the first stage of the CareFlight Operations Centre here in Darwin,” Mr Vatskalis said.

“Today, as the Lord Mayor of Darwin, I proudly got to unveil the new name of CareFlight’s new fixed wing aircraft; named City of Darwin – Garramilla.”

“With highly experienced flight crews who pilot the aeroplanes and the Top End Rescue Helicopter, combined with highly skilled medical staff – flight nurses and doctors who provide critical care to those in need – CareFlight plays a crucial role when it comes to looking after our community and all Territorians, and the new aircraft will give CareFlight an even greater ability to help people in need.”

CareFlight 29 was officially named at the Top End Medical Retrieval Hangar at Darwin Airport by Pauline Baban, Larrakia Elders Committee Member, the NT Minister for Health Natasha Fyles, Darwin Lord Mayor Kon Vatskalis and Chairman of the CareFlight Board of Directors, Andrew Refshauge.