The ongoing investigation into the August 10 fatal crash of an S-76C+ in the Baltic Sea has led the NTSB to ask the FAA to take “urgent” action on several recommendations directed at the twin-turbine helicopter’s hydraulic systems. The aircraft’s flight data recorder showed that the helicopter “pitched up and rolled to the left, followed by a series of rotations to the right before striking the water,” killing all 14 people aboard.
Eurocopter test pilot Didier Delsalle (center) and president and CEO Fabrice Brégier (right) yesterday accepted the world record verification from Fédération Aéronautique Internationale representative Jacques Escaffe (left) for landing the first helicopter on top of Mount Everest (elevation 29,035 feet). The feat was accomplished by Delsalle last May in a Eurocopter AS 350B3 Ecureuil/AStar.
Air Methods, one of the nation’s largest air medical transportation providers, yes-terday signed a memorandum of under-standing with American Eurocopter to buy 15 EC 135s. Deliveries are expected to begin next year.
FH1100 Manufacturing Corp. of Century, Fla., has selected an EFIS cockpit from Chelton Flight Systems (Booth No. 2821) as standard equipment on all new 2006 Model FH1100 helicopters. The Chelton FlightLogic system will also be available for retrofit on FH1100 helicopters produced before this year.
The Phoenix Police Department took possession of a new AgustaWestland A119 Koala helicopter in ceremonies yesterday at the AgustaWestland booth (No. 1141). It is the first of three A119s that will be configured with new, high-tech mission-specific equipment.
Precise Flight (Booth No. 2030) of Bend, Ore., has gained STC approval for the company’s high-intensity-discharge (HID) Pulselite landing light for the Robinson R22 and R44. Precise Flight’s neighbor, Leading Edge Avionics, will be the first to install the HID Pulselite kit for the Robinson helicopters. HID lighting produces more light, lasts longer and uses less energy, said Scott Philiben, Precise Flight v-p of sales.
Bell 206B LongRanger, Gulf of Mexico, Aug. 18, 2005–While attempting to land on the West Cameron 560 offshore oil platform, the Bell 206 hit the platform and crashed into the water. The commercial pilot and a mechanic were killed. Operated by Air Logistics of New Iberia, La., the helicopter was flying from another offshore platform in the Gulf of Mexico.
Since 1991 there have been 127 accidents involving helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS) operations, according to Helicopter Association International (HAI). Ninety-six of these were a direct result of pilot error, which can be broadly characterized as poor pilot technique; lack of situational awareness; loss of control; poor aeronautical decision-making; controlled flight into terrain, water or objects; or a combination of these.
Heavy Lift Helicopters is close to finalizing the design of the tank system for its ex-U.S. Marine Corps CH-53D Sea Stallion conversion. However, the U.S. Navy has withdrawn from an agreement to supply up to six airframes that would have provided components to keep the two “Fire Stallions” operational.
Bell Helicopter has selected Chelton Flight Systems to provide a synthetic-vision EFIS cockpit for the 407 program. The contract has a potential value of more than $100 million.
Bell claims to be the first OEM to offer synthetic vision for all its light and medium single-engine models. Plans call for Chelton equipment to become the “preferred” system offered for the 206B JetRanger, 206L LongRanger and the new 210.