Blood Samples Could Be Flying Again Soon

skybus mail loadingSkybus bosses are hopeful that medical samples can soon be transported on their flights.

The British International Helicopters service used to carry bloods and other specially classified items for the Health Centre and NHS. But after the end of the rotary service, they’ve been transferred on the cargo vessel, the Gry Maritha.

That’s caused problems for some local residents who have needed urgent test results. The Gry only sails three days a week, so some patients have had to travel to the mainland for testing.

Steamship Company managing director Jeff Marston told Councillors that all Land’s End staff have now been trained and CAA officials will assess procedures at St Mary’s this week.

Jeff says he hopes that they will grant a licence soon.


3 Responses to Blood Samples Could Be Flying Again Soon

  1. Kev February 21, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    Ian – it is bureaucracy gone mad, but not the company’s. Ships and aircraft have different regulators who impose different rules. The CAA who regulate aircraft are very, very hot on ‘dangerous goods’ and alas blood samples etc. fall into that category. Undoubtedly the ISSCo will have to jump through endless hoops, train their employees and god knows what else to get a ‘dangerous goods license’. They will already have a license for the Gry to carry dangerous goods by sea, as they have been carrying such goods for years.

    I could understand it if we were talking about flammables and explosives. But for the relatively small amount of samples that will already be packaged by the NHS according to the rules, it seems totally over the top.

    Similar to the debate about security at Newquay, ISSCo are just having to follow rules imposed on them.

    • Ian T February 22, 2013 at 8:42 am

      I understand the problems Kev, but the possible results of waiting for the Gry to come over are worrying. I read that doctors in Essex are very concerned because their samples now have to travel 80 miles BY ROAD via the M25 and M1 to Bedford. Could be two hours, I suppose, but could be nearer a week in Scilly at present.

  2. Ian T February 20, 2013 at 8:49 am

    Is it me..? How is it that samples can travel on the Gry Maritha but not on Skybus..? They are the same company after all. Sounds like bureaucracy gone mad. In the mean time someone could possibly have become seriously ill or even died.