Solving two problems at once is bound to generate feelings of accomplishment, and Air Evac Lifeteam found a way to accomplish this on a large scale with the able assistance of DART Aerospace.
Air Evac Lifeteam, which operates more than 140 air medical bases in 15 states, needed to find some weight savings after retrofit enhancements to its Bell 206 fleet. So Air Evac came up with the perfect idea to reduce the weight of its 206 Series rotorcraft. Cutting the skid landing gear height not only reduced the total weight by 20-30 pounds, but also reduced aircrew back strains and injuries by making it easier for crew members to load patients. Another bonus was the removal of the foot-high step bar so crew members no longer had to step over it while loading patients. [Read More...]
Air Evac Lifeteam
HeliTrak President Chris Nehls starts our interview with words that no writer wants to hear. “I’m afraid this is going to be a hard profile for you, as I’m a boring person.” Fortunately, the former farm boy from the Illinois corn belt was just letting his small-town Midwest modesty get the best of him. Nehls is a compelling risk-taker who leads a startup that is at the heart of bringing cutting-edge aviation autonomous technology to underserved aviators. After all, many pilots fly Robinson helicopters in the same airspace as those in avionic-laden aircraft. Shouldn’t Robinson pilots, and those who fly other smaller ‘common’ aircraft, also have access to collective pull down and autopilot technology? [Read More...]
HeliTrak Chris Nehls
R44 Collective Pull Down
Seven years ago I was invited to speak at my first Helisuccess Career Development Seminar and Job Fair and was literally blown away by the experience. This year’s event was no different and I can say it gets better and better each year. This year we had 13 speakers covering 16 topics and $4,000 given away in scholarship money. [Read More...]
The United States Helicopter Safety Team (www.USHST.org), a cooperative effort between industry and government, continues to promote safety and reduce civil helicopter accidents and fatalities nationwide. The team was formed in 2013 as a regional partner within the International Helicopter Safety Team (www.IHST.org) and has become a worldwide leader in improving safe helicopter operations. [Read More...]
United States Helicopter Safety Team
Chief Warrant Officer 3 Taylor Galvin in Baghdad, Iraq, died earlier this year as a result of injuries sustained when his helicopter crashed in Sinjar, in Iraq’s Nineveh Province. Galvin’s helicopter crashed while conducting a partnered counterterrorism mission in support of the Operation Inherent Resolve coalition to defeat the Islamic State, according to a U.S. Central Command statement.
A decorated Vietnam veteran died earlier this year while piloting his personal helicopter. Schwarz was a commercial pilot, who had a love of flying.
Henry E. Schwarz was the president of the Virginia Helicopter Association prior to his passing. In his earlier years Schwarz was a U.S. Army helicopter pilot who served in the Vietnam War. He led more than 100 combat air assaults and received 29 medals for performance and service to the country. He was also a member of the Distinguished Flying Cross Society and a member of the Wilbur Wright Chapter, National Capital Region. [Read More...]
Rotorcraft Pro Best of 2018
RPMN: Tell me about your first flight.
It was a J3 Cub. I was 8 or 9 years old and my dad took me out to a grass airstrip where plane rides were sold. After the pilot put me in the seat he started untying the airplane and when he got to the rear of the plane he lifted up the tail and started shaking it acting like the plane was going to take off It wasn’t even running yet, but I grabbed the stick and yelled, “Let her go!” [Read More...]
meet a rotorcraft pro
Palm Beach Helicopters
Anyone who’s ever traveled in the western United States, has come face to face with the great Rocky Mountains. They’re formidable. They’re hard. They’re rugged. Such are the characteristics of the people it takes to run a helicopter business in and around those beautiful, yet unforgiving rocks.
Mark Taylor is chief pilot and co-owner of Rocky Mountain Rotors (RMR). After hearing his journey, I view him as a living testimony to what happens when the school of hard knocks crosses paths with perseverance and a little bit of luck.
Taylor began at Silver State Helicopters as a Robinson R22 pilot. He now owns and operates a full-service helicopter operation utilizing the R22, R44, Bell 206, 407, and 429. The gregarious and charismatic aviator is a horseman and a hunter. At the end of my first day with him, he asked, “Do you like beer?” I knew we were going to get along just fine. We enjoyed an amazing Salmon Fly ale from Madison River Brewery that concluded Day One on a high note. [Read More...]
Rocky Mountain Rotors
Yellowstone Helicopter Charters
Yellowstone Helicopter Tours
Specialty helicopter products are like upgrades to well-engineered cars. They enhance the performance, safety, and value of the machines they are added to, while tweaking the admiration of their purchasers with the thought, I wish I’d come up with that! Below are some specialty helicopter products that crossed our desks at Rotorcraft Pro, and made us sit up in attention. [Read More...]
I’ve been privileged to fly in different countries around the world. You gain a perspective on the good, bad, and ugly of our aviation system here in the United States. With that said, I haven’t been anywhere outside of the U.S. where opportunity for all citizens to experience aviation is more available than here in the States. You are not excluded from aviation, because of your gender, race, ethnicity, religion, or any other differentiating factor. Additionally, many physically challenged persons find themselves successful in aviation as well. [Read More...]
Crew Resource Management (CRM) gives us the tools to make safe, prudent decisions; it’s something I wish I’d had while flying a JetRanger on a seismic survey contract in Papua New Guinea. Knowing what could hurt me would have prevented my nearly being eaten by a huge crocodile.
Mike Keith, a pilot with me on contract, and I (stupidly) agreed to go crocodile hunting at midnight with two line cutters Russ and Tom Dooley. I should have known to say no; a week earlier; Russ had thrown a 16-foot python in the back seat of my aircraft in a burlap sack. [Read More...]
CRM Crew Resource Management
My Two Cents