Peg Billson, formerly president of BBA Aviation Legacy Support, has been promoted to president and CEO of the company’s recently organized BBA Aviation Aftermarket Services division. The aftermarket services division includes subsidiaries Ontic, Dallas Airmotive, Premier Turbines, H+S Aviation, International Turbine Service, W.H. Barrett Turbine Engine Company, International Governor Services and APPH. The company’s Dallas Airmotive subsidiary has announced a restructuring of its U.S. sales organization.
Aviation International News » March 2013
China-based Citic Offshore Helicopter, which operates mainly medium twins for offshore passenger transportation, plans to divest its 94-percent stake in Citic General Aviation, for at least $13 million, according to Chinadaily.com. Citic General Aviation has a fleet of 18 helicopters and three business jets. As Citic General Aviation could not “perform in a large scale due to the limited number of jets it owns,” it posted “low revenue” in the last few years. It was profitable but all the profits were made by the helicopter business, while the business jet sector posted losses.
Offshore-energy helicopter service operator Bristow Group reported increases in revenue and net income for the fourth quarter of last year. Compared with the same period in 2011, operating revenue increased by 17 percent, to $346.7 million, and adjusted net income grew to $42.6 million, a $14.8 million jump from the comparable 2011 period.
The EASA has approved Bond’s STC modification of a Eurocopter EC135 for night-vision goggles (NVGs) operations to ground level, significant progress toward the UK’s first night air ambulance operations. The next step is obtaining operational approval from the UK CAA. Cockpit instrument lighting was demonstrated not to interfere with the NVGs. Additional equipment includes moving maps, an engine usage monitoring system and a powerline detection system.
A fourth AW169 intermediate twin joined the test program last month. The first AW169 flew last year and the PW210A-powered helicopter is expected to be certified next year. The test fleet has accumulated more than 150 flight hours. AgustaWestland also announced the appointment of William Hunt as the new CEO of AgustaWestland Philadelphia. The company’s plant there manufactured 54 AW139s and AW119Kxs in 2012 and employs 500 people.
The Avincis group, known under its Bond, Inaer, Australian Helicopters and Norsk Helikopterservice brands, has taken delivery of the first of the 16 new Sikorsky S-92s it ordered in December 2011, the largest single purchase of the type. Norsk accepted the first medium twin and will operate it, along with the second one, for Bond customers in the UK North Sea sector. Milestone Aviation Group is financing the first four S-92s.
Paraguay UNACE party leader and presidential candidate Lino Oviedo died February 2 when the Robinson R44 he was a passenger in crashed on a night flight from Concepcion to Asuncion. Adverse weather was reported in the area at the time of the accident, and the local press reported that the pilot, who was also killed along with Oviedo’s bodyguard, had objected to making the flight.
While all FBOs say that going the extra mile for the customer is their number-one priority, some–such as the Sonoma Jet Center (SJC)–will go to notable lengths to prove it, as the crew of a private jet that landed at the Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport facility discovered last year, when they missed their outbound commercial flight. The passenger and jet were going to remain in the area for a number of days, but the crew was headed home and the private flight arrived too late for the crew to catch the first leg of their trip home.
The first of up to 12 Bell-Boeing MV-22 Osprey tiltrotors are joining Marine Helicopter Squadron (HMX) 1, the unit tasked with transporting the President, other VIPs and their entourages. The Marine Corps was expected to take formal delivery of the first HMX-1 MV-22 last month. The MV-22s are replacing the CH-46E Sea Knights attached to the squadron and are being modified with upgraded communications equipment and seating. They are not expected to be used to transport the President.
FlightSafety International has begun training pilots in its new Pilatus PC-12NG simulator, located at the Dallas learning center. The FAA and Transport Canada have qualified the new full-motion simulator to Level D. EASA Level-D qualification is expected within months. The Dallas center also offers PC-12 maintenance training.
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