Emergency Response Coalition, Inc.
The Winthrop Harbor Police Department (WHPD) is the founding agency and coordinator of the AIR-ONE Emergency Response Coalition (formerly called the Law Enforcement Aviation Coalition), which provides air support services to law enforcement, emergency management and fire/rescue agencies throughout the region. Known by their familiar air-to-ground call sign, "Air-One", these specially equipped helicopters are frequently called out by local agencies who would otherwise not have air support capabilities available.
AIR-ONE is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3, charitable organization, staffed by volunteers who are professionals from the aviation, emergency management, law enforcement and fire service sectors.
The WHPD dispatch center (847-872-2131) is the designated communications point for all AIR-ONE helicopter operations. There is no cost to the Village of Winthrop Harbor for these missions. All operational costs are underwritten by AIR-ONE, with funding sources including government, corporate, community and agency contributions.
AIR-ONE helicopters are obtained through the U.S. Department of Defense surplus equipment program, which provides much needed equipment to law enforcement agencies throughout the country. Each aircraft is registered to and operated by a law enforcement agency, however they are not assets of the agency or municipality. Costs of operations (i.e. fuel, maintenance, parts, hangar, insurance, etc.) are underwritten by AIR-ONE as defined above. The air crews, including pilots, flight/observation officers and ground officers, are professional peace officers, emergency management and fire/rescue personnel who volunteer their time and expertise to the AIR-ONE program.
For further information, please visit the official AIR-ONE Web site at www.AirSupport.org.