Potential Alternate Helipad Use

This is to update you regarding the potential for occasional day and nighttime use of the temporary helipad over the next several months.

Beginning on or about June 30th, the contractor for the Hospital Replacement Wing project will begin overhauling the two elevators in the existing main, Fainer hospital building. These two elevators are essential pieces of equipment in that they service the helicopter landing pad on the roof of the building. This elevator access is critical to the hospital’s ability to serve our community as the Level II Trauma Center for western Ventura County.

In order to provide continuous elevator access to the helicopter landing area, only one elevator will be overhauled at a time while the other remains in service. In anticipation of the overhaul of the first elevator, preventive maintenance will be performed in advance on the elevator remaining in service to increase its reliability. Nevertheless, during the period that an elevator is being overhauled and out of service, the risk of an elevator failure and the associated inability to transport patients from the helipad to the emergency room is a possibility. In order to deal with this risk and ensure VCMC’s ability to serve emergency flight patients, the alternate helipad located in the upper parking lot of the VCMC campus near Foothill Road will be maintained ready for use.

The likelihood that both Fainer elevators would be inoperable at the same time requiring the use of the alternate helipad is considered very remote. Nevertheless, plans must be developed to deal with this possibility in order to provide life-saving care to critically injured patients who are transported to VCMC by helicopter.

The elevator improvements of concern are scheduled to last approximately 19 weeks from June 30th to November 10th, 2015. During this period, the alternate landing site located in the upper parking lot near Foothill Road will be maintained ready for use for emergency helicopter operations. The alternate helipad will only be used in the unlikely event that both Fainer elevators are inoperable at the same time, which could potentially occur at any time, day or night.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Matt Ehret, VCMC Hospital Replacement Wing Project Director at 805-652-3268 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. To subscribe to email project updates visit our website at vcmchrw.org.