A LIFE-SAVING charity has racked up a major milestone after taking to the skies for the 9,000th time.

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance (HIOWAA) reached the landmark last weekend when a crew took off from the charity’s Thruxton base.

Dr Amy Andrew, Dr Tim Nicholson-Roberts, specialist Critical Care paramedic Louise Wigmore and captain Dave Nicholls were aboard the vessel that responded to the milestone mission on Saturday, November 2.

HIOWAA CEO Alex Lochrane said: “Whilst I recognise the tremendous achievement of having flown 9,000 missions, I must remind myself that every time the Air Ambulance is called out, we are responding to someone in a potentially critical condition who requires urgent treatment before they reach hospital.

“As an independent charity, we just could not do this without the support of our local community.”

HIOWAA began operations in July 2007 and in July this year the charity recorded their busiest month to date, with a total of 244 callouts.

The life-saving Charity has responded to 1,887 missions across the region so far this year.

HIOWAA is a charity and receives no government funding. It relies upon the generosity of individuals and organisations to help save lives and requires over £15,000 a day in funding.

For more information about the charity go to hiowaa.org