Paris Air Show

EC copters go to offshore ops

 - December 13, 2006, 9:24 AM

Eurocopter yesterday  reported orders here at Le Bourget for EC 225 and EC 155 B1 rotorcraft from Bristow Helicopters and, in a separate contract, for EC 135s from Era Helicopters. UK-based Bristow took delivery of one EC 225 at Eurocopter’s static display. Eurocopter president and CEO Fabrice Brégier handed over of the aircraft, which is on display throughout the show. This marks the launch of the EC 225 into North Sea offshore oil and gas operations. Bristow Helicopters is the first EC 225 customer for  this application. It will receive two of the medium-weight twins this year–including the one it got on Tuesday. The second follows next month. Both will be based in Scotland.

After taking delivery of the aircraft, Bristow Helicopters managing director Richard Burman signed a contract for two additional EC 225s for delivery in 2006. Burman said his company would order four EC 155 B1s in the next few weeks.

Eurocopter, in another deal, received an order here yesterday from Seacor Holdings subsidiary Era Helicopters for four EC 135s with an option to buy four more. Era serves the offshore oil and gas market in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska and also provides flight-seeing, utility and firefighting services. The 135, which can carry up to seven passengers, has a fast cruise speed of 138 knots and is fitted with two FADEC-controlled Pratt & Whitney 206B2 engines.