Australian VTOL news

General stuff that gets thrown about when Helicopter Pilots shoot the Breeze.
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Eric Hunt
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Eric Hunt » Thu Dec 12 2019, 07:01

From Dec 2010 glossy brochure from the NSW tourism.

Harbour Chopper
Since the late 80s, Sydney has been one of the few global cities without a helicopter service. A Harbour Chopper
service will provide a bird’s-eye view of the harbour and a unique way to experience its major attractions. A
tourist helicopter service will also address increasing demand from highyield visitors for direct passenger access
to the heart of the city and beyond to the Blue Mountains, the Hunter and north and south coasts.
Harbourside Helicopters P/L has a fleet of the latest, low-noise helicopters to provide the service. Federal, state and
local government need to work with the industry to identify the site for the


From Nov 2011
DEBATE over plans to build a heliport on the shores of Sydney Harbour has been reignited with the federal government funding a feasibility study to find a suitable site.

The Tourism Minister, Martin Ferguson, said Harbourside Helicopters Pty Ltd would receive $65,000 to part-fund the study on the best location from which to operate tourism flights over the harbour and to regional areas including the Hunter Valley, Mudgee and Bowral.

A director of Harbourside Helicopters, Moya Sprod, said Sydney was unusual among major international cities because it did not have a heliport.

While the company was keen for a ''harbourside'' site, and had already considered several, she declined to nominate her preferred locations.

To help keep noise down, the company planned to acquire a Eurocopter helicopter which she said was quiet enough to get approval to operate in the Grand Canyon.

A harbourside heliport is strongly backed by the Transport and Tourism Forum, which is pushing the government to include one at Barangaroo.


From Nov 2019

NOTICE OF PROPOSED DEREGISTRATION - Voluntary
Company details
Company: HARBOURSIDE HELICOPTERS PTY LIMITED
ACN: 129 897 936

Notice
ASIC has received an application to deregister the Company under s601AA.

ASIC may deregister the Company when two months have passed since publication of this notice.


Date of publication: 22 November 2019


Another Great dreamer seems to have taken some money from the government and slid away without doing anything for it? From having a "fleet of helicopters", it went to "plan to get one" to "see ya later."
rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Dec 18 2019, 10:25

Source: VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific - November Report

ATSB Update – UH-1H – Lost in bad weather near Newcastle on 6 Sep ’19

Our thanks to Paul Sadler, Communications Manager, Australian Transport Safety Bureau, for keeping us informed on VTOL safety incidents. Thanks Paul!

ATSB Preliminary Report of 7 Nov 2019 is still under investigation. The Final Report yet to be released. Edited below due space considerations.

What happened. On 6 Sep ’19, at 1430 AEST, VH-UVC, a Bell UH-1H helicopter departed Archerfield Airport, Qld, with four passengers on board. The owner-pilot was delivering the helicopter to Bankstown Airport, NSW. Australia.

At about 1600 VH-UVC landed at Coffs Harbour, NSW and was refuelled. It then departed south at 1648 and at 1755, the pilot called Williamtown Tower, for a clearance to track south via the Visual Flight Rules lane. He also requested a climb to higher altitude, to ‘take advantage of favourable winds. The tower then asked the pilot to contact Williamtown Approach for clearance.

At 1757, the pilot made contact and was identified four nm to the north-east of Broughton Island. He was cleared to operate at whatever altitude was needed, but not below 2,400 ft (LSALT). The pilot then asked to operate between 3,000 and 3,500 ft. At 1758 VH-UVC was cleared to track coastal at 3,000 to 3,500 ft. At 1759, Approach asked the pilot if Bankstown was his destination. At 1800, the pilot was then told if any further track and altitude changes were required to advise accordingly. (Possibly due bad weather along intended route).

At 1801, the controller again offered alternative tracking if required. The pilot responded requesting to remain on the eastern side of R578A restricted area. The controller clarified this request - the pilot replied if it was not available, he would continue the VFR coastal route. The pilot was then cleared to track as required for Bankstown Airport. The track clearance was acknowledged by the pilot at 1802.

However, at 1805, the controller asked if things were “operations normal?” This was due to the fact, VH-UVC dropped to 2,700 ft. In reply, the pilot commented on a sudden wind gust affecting the helicopter’s altitude. The controller then re-cleared VH-UVC to operate between 2,400 (LSALT) and 3,500 ft. The pilot again commented on the turbulent conditions. The controller again offered his assistance to the pilot - if it was needed.

VH-UVC was observed making a left turn to the south, departing the coastal VFR lane and heading offshore. According to Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) data supplied by Airservices Australia, the helicopter’s position at the beginning of the turn at 1811, was 2.3 km west-south-west of Anna Bay.

The aircraft continued to track offshore to the south-west for about 1 min 20 sec, maintaining between 3,000 and 3,600 ft before commencing a rapidly descending, left turn. Later data showed the aircraft commenced this descent from 3,400 ft at about 1813, and the last data point identified the aircraft passing 525 ft only seconds later.

Two attempts by the Approach controller to contact the pilot were unsuccessful.

The controller then called the pilot saying identification had been lost and to immediately check altitude. Further advice on area QNH, the lowest safe altitude in the area, and an instruction to climb immediately were broadcast. The controller followed that transmission with several more unsuccessful attempts to contact the pilot.

Pilot details. The pilot held a CPL(H) and was qualified to fly by day under the Visual Flight Rules. The pilot last conducted a single-engine helicopter flight review in October 2018 that was valid until 31 October 2020. His logbook indicated he had a total of 1,440.5 flying hours experience. The pilot held a Class 1 aviation medical certificate that was valid until 26 Apr 2020.

Weather and available light. Forecast weather for the Williamtown area included moderate to severe turbulence and wind gusts up to 38 knots from the north-west from 1000. From 1800, severe turbulence was forecast with wind gusts up to 45 knots occurring from the west-north-west and layers of scattered cloud at 4,000 ft & broken cloud at 12,000 ft AGL. Light showers of rain were also forecast. At 1753, controllers at Williamtown observed the visibility to be about 6 to 7 km.

Last light for the Anna Bay area, was calculated to occur at 1801; however, the presence of cloud cover, dust or masking terrain to the west would have resulted in last light occurring at an earlier time.

Further investigation. The investigation is continuing and will include examination of: meteorological conditions and pre flight preparation, pilot qualifications, experience and medical history, recovered aircraft wreckage, aircraft performance characteristics and recorded flight data, aircraft maintenance documentation and operational records from of air traffic services.

Our thoughts are with the families in these difficult times.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Twistgrip » Wed Dec 18 2019, 13:26

According to the statement above, this is a stark reminder that this avoidable accident will be used as a case study for years to come and with all due respect to the families this should be taught to pilots doing their studies and training of the perils of pushing personal limits, pressure to arrive at your destination, adverse weather conditions and alleged flying at night without qualifications. A sad loss of life that was avoidable.
"You can watch things happen, you can make things happen or you can wonder what happened"
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Eric Hunt
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Eric Hunt » Wed Dec 18 2019, 19:10

From 1800, severe turbulence was forecast


When I was flying Hueys, if moderate turbulence was forecast, then we needed a REALLY good reason to go flying.

Severe turbulence forecast meant stay in the crewroom.
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skypig
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby skypig » Wed Dec 18 2019, 22:12

Eric Hunt wrote:
From 1800, severe turbulence was forecast


When I was flying Hueys, if moderate turbulence was forecast, then we needed a REALLY good reason to go flying.

Severe turbulence forecast meant stay in the crewroom.


I’ll stay in the crew room if severe turbulence is forecast! No matter what machine I’m flying. (Read the definition!!)
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Fri Dec 20 2019, 19:39

Tender Alert - Released 20 Dec 2019 & closing 29 Feb 2020

Queensland Government - Provision of Air Ambulance Services

Health Support Queensland and the Aeromedical Retrieval and Disaster Management Branch, Prevention Division, Department of Health would like to invite interested parties to attend an Industry Engagement Session to discuss market drivers and opportunities for the upcoming Air Ambulance Services Invitation to Offer.

Industry Engagement Sessions Standing Offer Arrangement (SOA) HSQ102646

Services for Cairns & Far North Queensland; Mount Isa & North West Region; The Central West; South West & Darling Downs; Townsville; Mackay Whitsunday Region; Rockhampton; Gladstone; Wide Bay Burnett and
South East Queensland

Briefings: One-hour sessions will be held with interested parties between 3, 4 and 6 February 2020.

Where: Aeromedical Retrieval and Disaster Management Branch, Level 7, 33 Charlotte Street, Brisbane Qld 4000. If you are unable to attend in person, participation by video conference may be arranged.

Registration: You must complete and return the Industry Engagement Sessions RSVP Form by 16:00 AEST 17 January 2020 to medicalservices-sps@health.qld.gov.au. You will be contacted on 22 January 2020 to confirm your session date and time.

Industry Engagement Sessions RSVP Form. Standing Offer Arrangement (SOA) HSQ102646 Provision of Air Ambulance Services. Please confirm your attendance to the Industry Engagement Session by returning this form by 16:00 AEST 17 January 2020 to medicalservices-sps@health.qld.gov.au

Extract (Copy & Paste):

Industry Engagement Sessions Standing Offer Arrangement (SOA) HSQ102646

I would like to attend an Industry Engagement Session for HSQ102646 Provision of Air Ambulance Services:

• in person • via teleconference. I acknowledge and accept the protocols:

Company:


Company Representative Name:

Email: Contact Number:


Preferred Session Date: • 3 February 2020 • 4 February 2020 • 6 February 2020


Preferred Session Times:• 10.00 am – 11.00 am • 11.00 am – 12 noon • 1.00 pm – 2.00 pm • 2.00 pm – 3.00 pm


Proposed Attendees:
End Form.

More details in complimentary VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific December Report emailed out Jan 6 Jan 2020. Not a reader? PM for free copy
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Rebaudet
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Rebaudet » Sat Dec 21 2019, 05:59

Brilliant post, thanks...
[*]if you have never failed, you haven't tried hard enough
rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sun Dec 22 2019, 10:02

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Message from VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific. Thank you for your feedback about our complimentary service we provide to more than 4,300 readers. We have revved up our capability to follow the enormous changes coming our way next year! This was covered in the mid-month newsletter.

But we want to pass on the thanks of the Australian public to those giving so much defending our lives and communities from the fire emergencies. The editor reported he attended an upmarket Christmas Carol event last night; and the organisers took time to thank all the Australians and other international teams now fighting the bushfires both on the ground and from the air. The audience was told these folks were giving up so much of their Christmas family activities to save others during this dreadful drought and almost unmanageable bushfires. They also recognise the loss of life and injuries being suffered by our local heroes.

The response via applause was enormous! Many had tears in their eyes, knowing there had been several fatalities and almost 100 firefighters need hospitalization to date.

It shows we do care - perhaps it is the Australian way – mateship!

Just thought this should be shared with those now sleeping rough on our behalf!
rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sat Dec 28 2019, 11:56

VSL student loans increase good news for schools and students in 2020.

But what about helo folks?

In April 2019, Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack announced from January 2020, the amount those studying aviation can borrow more under the vocational education and training (VET) student loans scheme will be increased from $104,440 to $150,000. An industry review in 2018 had shown the previous loan limit was not enough to provide aeroplane student pilots with all the licences and ratings required. It was recommended the increased limit would allow more students to obtain the Flight Instructor Rating as well as either the agriculture rating for students wanting to stay in General Aviation or the Multi Crew Cooperation course for those wanting to continue to the airlines.

That’s why the cap will be lifted to the same level as courses for medicine, dentistry and veterinary science.

An aviation skills and training report written by a panel of experts chaired by The Australian Aviation Associations Forum and published in July 2018 found Australia was experiencing a severe shortage of aviation personnel and urgent action was needed if the country was to avoid major disruptions.

The panel of experts comprised representatives from Aircraft Structural Contractors, Aviation Australia, Basair Aviation College, QantasLink, the Regional Aviation Association of Australia, the Regional Express Flight Training Academy and Virgin Australia, made extensive recommendations.

Later, the Australian Aviation Associations Forum (TAAAF) chairman Jeff Boyd welcomed the increase in lifetime loan limit. “This increase will now ensure that pilots will be able to complete their training with not only bare minimum qualifications, but relevant and employable qualifications thereby helping to ease Australia’s pilot shortage,” Boyd said in the ministers’ statement.

Readers should note the helicopter industry was not directly involved in the AIS study, although the TAAAF (Jeff Boyd) would be representing the AHIA which is a member of the TAAAF.

As a result, helicopter potential students are not sure how the new increase will work for them at helicopters schools. Due to the more expensive flying rates, a VFR single engine commercial license will probably cost around $95,000 using a VSL loan. Advanced training for IFR and multiengine helicopter training is very expensive and is yet to be evaluated.

Further, the situation is further complicated by the fact only a very few flying schools can provide the needed advanced training. This situation is being reviewed by several government agencies, such as TAFE Queensland.

This is a challenge for the AHIA executive; who are doing a great job getting RotorTech 2020 ready for June 2020 – and representing the firefighting industry as needed during these terrible times with bushfires. However, training schools appear not yet be ready to handle this complicated issue and are not well represented at Rotortech 2020.

Is it time to have a new industry group focussed on the helicopter training problems; or maybe ask the AHIA to establish a training advisory group within their existing structure.

The new funding starts in a few days .... are we ready?
rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Jan 1 2020, 02:42

Extremely hot weather and erratic wind conditions in steep terrain claims Bell 214B.

On 13 Nov 2019, adverse weather conditions proved too much for the powerful Bell 214B during low level waterbombing, which was forced to crash land into a tight clearing. The helicopter then rolled onto its side; however, the pilot walked away with only minor injuries!

Paul Sadler, Communications Manager, Australian Transport Safety Bureau, told us they often release Occurrence Briefs to expedite and share safety messages in the absence of an investigation. On 23 Dec 2019, they published a report into the Bell 214B helicopter water bombing accident near Pechey, Qld.

In brief (edited), the update states, at 1344 AEST, the helicopter approached the bushfire downwind and downhill from the north-west at about 60 knots and made a descending right-hand turn back into wind over the fire source. The descent was continued towards the drop zone. The airspeed was further slowed, and the height was reduced to about 50 feet above treetop level.

After the water was dropped onto the fire, the helicopter climbed away towards rising terrain. The pilot heard the low rotor RPM warning and but had insufficient height to recover the rotor RPM by lowering the collective. Despite his best attempts to climb above the obstacles and fire, the rotor RPM appeared to decay further. As a result, the Bell 214B collided with the ground and rolled onto its left side. The pilot was able to turn off the fuel to stop the engine and exited the helicopter via the overhead window with only minor injuries. Neither the g-force activated ELT beacon or flight tracking alarm were triggered.

Based on the pilot’s account and assessment of the recovered aircraft, mechanical malfunctions were ruled out. The operator later stated the accident was most likely the result of a loss of rotor RPM from which the pilot was unable to recover, due to a downwind descending turn, a low altitude water release and a departure into rising terrain. The pilot had to decide between putting the helicopter into tall trees and the active bushfire or climbing over the trees to clear ground. In choosing the latter, the rotor RPM decayed further, and the helicopter contacted the ground.

rickshaw: A good luck story when fighting the severe Australian bushfires!
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby havick » Wed Jan 1 2020, 05:38

Hope the pilot is back in the saddle!
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rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Fri Jan 3 2020, 06:24

Tender Alert - Released 20 Dec 2019 & closing 29 Feb 2020
Queensland Government - Provision of Air Ambulance Services

On 3 Jan 2020, the Qld Govt advised an update to the potential contract mentioned previously.

It is for FW only.

So - I will not track this anymore on your behalf. But it is still an active invitation to go to briefings.

False alarm. Apologies.

rickshaw
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Mon Jan 6 2020, 03:01

Australian bushfires – recommended phone app – helps when lost

Emergency+ app

Several days ago, a spokesperson from the New South Wales RFS headquarters said their 000-emergency phone service normally handles 50 emergencies per day; now the number is more than 5,000.

Although they have increased their capacity to handle this number; they have noted a large number of people are calling in for help when they do not know where they are, which is understandable, if they been driving in heavy smoke conditions or maybe elsewhere when they suddenly need help.

The operators are spending an enormous amount of time trying to work out where the caller is located; which is especially hard for those who are tourists in unfamiliar territory.

The RFS strongly recommends the Emergency+ app, a free app developed by Australia's emergency services and their Government and industry partners which can be installed on your phone. The app uses GPS functionality built into smart phones to help a Triple Zero (000) caller to provide critical location details required to mobilise emergency services.

The moment you turn ‘tap on the app’; your latitude and longitudinal is shown so you and the operator can see where you are.

Those of you who have an aeromedical or SAR background will appreciate the advantage you are given when you can get specific geographical coordinates for your GPS systems.

And the price is right!
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Mon Jan 6 2020, 22:52

Helicopter Association International (HAI) names next President

7 Jan 2020. Chairperson of the HAI’s Board, Jan Becker, said the Board was pleased to announce James A. Viola as the President and CEO effective 16 Jan 2020. James replaces Matthew S. Zuccaro, who announced his retirement last fall.

Viola most recently served as director of General Aviation (GA) Safety Assurance for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). In this role, he oversaw 78 Flight Standards District Offices (FSDOs) and 2,500 employees across the United States and was responsible for maintaining consistency and standardization in the application of safety oversight activities for the GA community. Additionally, he ensured stakeholder and public needs were met quickly and efficiently and was responsible for starting the US Helicopter Safety Team (USHST), serving as the initial government co-chair.

"When Matt announced his retirement, the board knew that replacing him would be no easy task. We had to find a dynamic, innovative CEO who has both vision and passion," said Jan Becker, HAI's board chair. "We sought someone able to take up the challenge of leading HAI forward to meet the needs of a globally changing industry. With Jim, we found that leader, as well as one who understands and supports HAI's safety values.
Our congratulations to James and thanks to Matt for a job well done over the past years.

Jan Becker is also the CEO of Becker Helicopters Pilot Academy (Australia).
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sat Jan 18 2020, 19:31

Changing face of vertical flight – massive investments underway.

The embryo aerial mobility industry, which includes the air taxi market is receiving enormous financial resources to develop new technologies over the next three to five years. Car maker Hyundai has announced it is committing almost USD$52 billion (AUD$75 billion) for the development of electric engines and vehicles, flying cars and other mobility resources to bring air taxi services to market by 2023. The same year Uber Elevate aims to deploy limited commercial eVTOL operations to global customers. Due to limitations of battery technologies these services will be initially limited ranges of less than 160 km.

Aviation regulators are wondering what effect this will have on the helicopter industry of today. Experts suggest the air taxi industry will initially require qualified helicopter pilots or operators qualified for this completely new industry.

They are also alerting us to a more serious problem, as the first tiltrotor aeromedical aircraft maybe undergoing trials in the northern regions of Australia during the next decade - the shortages of engineers and pilots due to an ageing workforce and the needs of the new technologies must be addressed during the Senate Inquiry now underway.

Just a reminder for Aussies. Are you keeping notes on what you can send to the Senate Inquiry into GA by Senator Susan from Townsville?

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