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While on vacation near the Galapagos Islands with her family and friends, an individual suffered a fatal medical event. Global Rescue was tasked with the repatriation of the family and the mortal remains from Ecuador to Baltimore, Maryland.
- Volcanic eruption
- Shifting winds; ash plume
- Traumatic psychological event for the family
Once tasked with the mission, Global Rescue immediately dispatched a medical specialist trained in traumatic incident response to escort the family. Shortly after takeoff, Mt. Tungurahua, an active volcano near the destination airfield, erupted. All commercial air traffic was diverted from Ecuador. Global Rescue actively monitored the direction and composition of the ash plume and was able to successfully identify an opening through which to land the aircraft in Guayaquil.
It was critical to minimize the time the aircraft was on the ground as the ash plume continued to shift with the wind and threatened the aircraft’s ability to depart. By efficiently coordinating logistics with the U.S. Embassy, the Ecuadorian government and the medical examiner’s office, the aircraft spent less than one hour on the ground and was able to depart unimpeded.
Global Rescue successfully completed the repatriation of the entire group on the same day the remains were released from the medical examiner’s office, despite the eruption.