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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Helicopter: Operations in Switzerland

Area of operation

  • Why doesn't Rega operate in canton Valais?
    Rega performs air-rescue operations throughout all of Switzerland except for the canton of Valais. The reason for this lies in the history of Swiss air rescue. Already in the early days, when air-rescue pioneer, Herman Geiger, frequently carried out missions on behalf of Rega, his home canton of Valais started to organise its own air-rescue operations.

    Emergency rescue in Valais comes under the auspices of a privately organised cantonal rescue organisation. It operates the Valais ambulance service 144 and is responsible for all rescue missions, both on the ground and in the air.

    Any requests for assistance from within the canton of Valais that are received via the Rega emergency number 1414 are redirected to the competent authority in Valais, which then decides what form the emergency assistance should take (helicopter, Swiss Alpine Club rescue team, ambulance, etc.). To this day, air-rescue in Valais is still primarily carried out by the two helicopter firms, Air-Glaciers and Air Zermatt.

    Rega patronage also covers missions flown by the rescue organisations in Valais. The conditions of patronage are the same as for the rest of the country.


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