One of my assignments here at AIN is compiling and editing the Accidents page for our flagship monthly magazine, Aviation International News. Each month I comb through reports on the NTSB website and others, looking for those accidents that I think will be of value and interest to our readers. Unfortunately, I cannot include them all because of space constraints.
The French helicopter lobby, UFH, and a congressman from the wine-producing Burgundy region have voiced concerns about a recent law banning most crop-dusting activities on environmental grounds. The congressman is saying that, for one hectare (about 2.5 acres) of vineyard, a helicopter uses only 16 gallons of plant-care liquid, thanks to its pinpoint precision.
A call for proposal released for Europe’s main aerospace research project, the €1.6 billion ($2.2 billion) Clean Sky joint technology initiative, has highlighted a strong focus on electric systems for helicopters.
Feedback from exhibitors at this year’s Helicopter Association International Heli-Expo show–the 63rd annual event–was notably positive, a clear indication that the record attendee and exhibitor numbers signal a strong performance by the rotorcraft industry during the past year. Heli-Expo 2011 attendance reached more than 20,000, according to HAI, and exhibitors totaled 625, up from 15,243 attendees and 596 exhibitors last year.
Denver-based Air Methods Corp. (Booth No. 856), which claims the title of “largest air medical transportation company in the world,” announced yesterday the acquisition by its Products Division of United Rotorcraft Solutions.
Sikorsky Aircraft and Milestone Aviation Group of Dublin, Ireland, announced jointly yesterday Milestone’s order for five Sikorsky S-76C++ helicopters, for delivery to Milestone in the second half of this year. Milestone (Booth No. 4042) plans to offer the new helicopters for lease to helicopter operators anywhere in the world.
Helicopter Technology Company (HTC) has announced development of new composite main- and tailrotor blades for the MD369, 500 and 600 helicopter series.
Aviall will supply helicopter parts to Broussard, La.-based Rotorcraft Leasing’s 12 bases in Louisiana, Texas, Florida and California. Founded in 1990, Rotorcraft Leasing lays claim to being the largest privately held Part 135 operator in the Gulf of Mexico.
Eurocopter’s new North Sea Service Centre at Aberdeen in the northeast of Scotland is the blueprint for the manufacturer’s concerted effort to locate product support and training infrastructure as close as possible to operators of its aircraft. The new facility was officially opened on February 1 and the company is advancing plans for similar developments in the U.S., Asia and South America.
Canadaπs Transportation Safety Board (TSB) issued its final report February 9 on the fatal 2009 accident of a Cougar Helicopters Sikorsky S-92A off Newfoundland that killed 17. The helicopter crashed while attempting to ditch after its main gearbox lubrication system failed due to two cracked oil filter bowl mounting studs.