Residents of the Saint-Tropez gulf, on the French Riviera, are threatening to block helipads and the road through Saint-Tropez if the city does not make progress on addressing helicopter noise. Every summer, wealthy visitors to Saint-Tropez make extensive use of helicopters, either private or chartered, to bypass traffic jams on the busy roads.
MD Helicopters MD 500E, Sunrise Beach, Mo., May 25, 2008–Landing at a private helipad at Lake of the Ozarks, the MD 500 hit the water; one passenger was killed, the commercial pilot and two passengers received minor injuries and one passenger was unhurt. On approach, the helicopter slowed to a hover, then made a “very quick
Sikorsky S-76, Grand Rapids, Mich., May 29, 2008–The Aero Med Spectrum Health S-76 was taking off from the helipad on the roof of the Spectrum Health Hospital when the tail rotor struck a radio tower; the helicopter crashed
on the roof and was destroyed by fire. No one was injured.
The UFH, the French helicopter association, is studying how to relaunch scheduled flights among Paris heliport, a helipad in La Défense business district and Paris Charles de Gaulle airport. The idea is to prove the viability of such a service.
France-based operator Azur Hélicoptère is considering offering helicopter connections between Lyon Saint Exupéry airport and the city’s convention center, which would involve building a helipad downtown. Overflights of populated areas are strictly regulated in Europe, so the operator would use the Rhône River as a route. Other links would be offered to and from Lyon Bron business airport and the neighboring exhibition center.
A Sikorsky S-76A crashed onto a helipad at Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich., during an FAA check ride on May 29, seriously injuring the pilot and the FAA inspector aboard. The helicopter was operated by Aero Med Spectrum Health.
AGUSTA A109E, DALLAS, TEXAS, SEPT. 3, 2003–The Agusta twin-engine helicopter (N143CF) was substantially damaged at approximately 7:50 p.m. CDT during an aborted takeoff from the Methodist Dallas Medical Center helipad. The commercial pilot received minor injuries and the flight paramedic and flight nurse were uninjured.
Rapid economic growth in the United Arab Emirates is fueling the expansion of Dubai-based helicopter operator Helidubai. Less than two years after its inception, the company, owned by the government of Dubai, has embarked on a fleet expansion with both passenger and aerial-work aircraft. In addition, it is also striving to help create dedicated heliports and helipads in the burgeoning city.
London’s docklands area, located east of the capital, has a new helipad– just 15 minutes from the Excel exhibition center and London City Airport (which bans rotorcraft) and 20 minutes from the Canary Wharf business district.
FEC Heliports, in Chesham, UK, is offering a portable aluminum helipad that can be used with helicopters weighing up to 15,000 pounds. Company representative Colin Little said the Portapad can be built in two hours. It can be accommodated in a car trailer similar to those used for glider transport. All usual accessories can be fitted to it. These can be a hot fluid-based snow melt system, a windsock or removable steps, for example.