The Mission Aviation Fellowship’s (MAF) Ecuadorian affiliate, Alas de Socorro del Ecuador (ADSE), has joined in the relief effort in Ecuador, using a Quest Kodiak turboprop single to airlift injured to area hospitals. ADSE also has been ferrying in people and supplies to the areas ravaged by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake on April 16 and subsequent aftershocks and flooding. More than 650 are reported dead and thousands more injured.
The staffs of MAF and ADSE have used the airplane in recent days to transport four patients from the earthquake zone, including two children with head injuries. They also have delivered sheets, blankets, non-perishable food and bottled water to affected areas.
"Currently we’ve helped get some Samaritan’s Purse first-response teams into the area to assess bringing in a larger flight with a remote medical setup to help people with injuries from the earthquake,” said MAF disaster response manager John Woodberry, adding that because roads and bridges have been damaged, the flights will involve a range of relief missions.
The Kodiak, which can operate from unimproved surfaces and take off in less than 1,000 feet at its full gross takeoff weight of 7,255 pounds, was designed for humanitarian organizations operating in remote areas. “The origins of Quest stem from the need for a modern, rugged STOL aircraft that can meet the demanding needs of humanitarian aviation,” said Quest president and CEO Sam Hill. About 20 percent of the fleet is used by humanitarian organizations.