The families of the two Colombian men killed in the July 2011 crash of a Robinson R66 have hired Los Angeles law firm Baum Hedlund to represent them. Last month the law firm issued a press release featuring photos of the dead men with their families and blasting Robinson for placing “profit over passenger safety.” Baum Hedlund has faced off with Robinson in five previous crashes of R22s and R44s.
The FAA is moving to redefine what “extremely remote” means when it comes to Part 29 certification provisions regarding loss of helicopter gearbox lubrication. The S-92 originally gained certification after Sikorsky convinced the FAA that complete loss of lubrication was extremely remote. Failure of the main rotor gearbox lubrication system is blamed for the fatal ditching of a Cougar Helicopters S-92A off Newfoundland in March 2009.
Eurocopter has clarified the EC175 certification status, having apparently changed plans. The new medium twin is “on time” for full certification late this year. At one point, Eurocopter was planning a basic type certification late last year, followed by offshore mission equipment certification this year. The company has decided to combine the certifications.
Garmin received an STC for installation of the G500H helicopter avionics system in the Robinson R44. The installation requires a 10-hole instrument panel. For R44s with the seven- or nine-hole panel, a custom panel is available from Garmin, or customers can purchase one from Robinson. The G500H price is $24,995, and optional helicopter synthetic vision technology adds $8,000. The installation requires a $500 parts kit, and the custom Garmin instrument panel costs $4,500.
The U.S. Navy’s latest attempt to replace the aging Presidential helicopter fleet has been delayed. The Pentagon rejected an analysis of alternatives (AoA) for the VXX program because no “cost-effective” solution was identified, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
In a deft political maneuver that capitalizes on the perceived need of Congress to deliver election-year public works spending, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) attached an amendment today imposing helicopter flight restrictions in Long Island and Los Angeles to the $52 billion federal highway bill (S.1813). This amendment would mandate offshore routes for helicopters transiting the North and South sections of Long Island and require the FAA to develop more restrictive flight paths for civil helicopters operating over the Los Angeles basin.
America may run on Dunkin’, but the world runs on oil.
So does the helicopter industry. This was particularly evident at Heli-Expo 2012 (February 11 to 14), held rather appropriately in Dallas, deep in the heart of the U.S. petroleum market.
Late in January Eurocopter unveiled record revenues–more than €5 billion, with service activity offsetting helicopter deliveries that sagged slightly. The Marignane, France-based company claims to have a 43-percent market share. For 2020, CEO Lutz Bertling is aiming at €9 billion revenues ($11.7 billion), at least 40 percent of it derived from services.
A mechanic at Glendale Municipal Airport (KGEU), Ariz., while standing next to a Robinson R44 during a maintenance run of the engine on Friday last week, lost control of the aircraft, which had been parked between two buildings near the airport’s south hangar.
Bob Munton, founder and former owner of the biennial Helitech show, thinks the rotorcraft industry still needs another event. Planned for September 26 to 27 in Silverstone, England, The Helicopter Show already has commitments from the UK distributor of Robinson Helicopter, Marenco SwissHelicopter, Helicopters Guimbal of France and Quest Helicopters of the UAE.