Posts Tagged pilot

Pilot harvests Christmas trees the crazy way

As Christmas approaches, we thought it would be a good idea to resurrect this video of daredevil pilot Dan Clark harvesting Christmas trees in the US state of Oregon.

Flying a Bell 206B3 Jetranger, Clark uses inertia  and big cojones to get the job done in double-quick time.

Comments on the web indicate that this is not unusual behaviour in Christmas tree country, with Robert Bachelder saying, “The helis are running around like this all day every day during harvest (I have even seen some crazy ones run at night with lights but that is really dangerous).

“The growers usually pay by the pound or by the tree for getting them out of the field so the pilots run at the edge of their abilities to save fuel and increase profit.  Obviously it takes a lot of skill and practice, but the guys that run trees are all skilled and usually have thousands of flying hours in their logbooks and/or military flight training.”

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Call for Rusty Award nominations

Twelve months ago Helinews owner Nick Dower started the ‘Rusty Award’ as an acknowledgement of outstanding mentorship to airmen/women. The award was created in memory of Russell Aitken, who was tragically taken in a helicopter accident in Papua New Guinea in July 2012.

Russell ‘Rusty’ Aitken was an instructor and mentor to many pilots including Nick and Helinews Editor Chrissy Hogarth. Our summer issue will cover the award ceremony and feature a ‘Passion or Purpose’ story on the man.

We would now like to call for nominations for the 2013 ‘Rusty Award’. If you would like to nominate someone you believe to be an outstanding mentor in the industry, please email us at and include in your email the name of the person you are nominating, your name and position, and the reasons why you believe this person should receive the award.

The winners will be publicly announced and a ceremony will take place in 2014.

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Spain gets first all-female medical helicopter crew

Spain’s first all-female medical helicopter crew has been formed at the Malpartida medical base in the western city of Cácares.

The four-person crew is made up of pilot Beatriz Parera, medic Gloria Palacios and Salobrar Sánchez and Rocio Ramos from the Extremadura Health Service, and uses a Eurocopter EC135.

“The gender of the crew doesn’t matter,” Parera says. “What matters is the way the crew and the health professionals work together to ensure successful missions.”

The service is operated by INAER Spain, which operates 27 medical aircraft in the country. The company says that last year it completed 8,228 medical emergency missions and treated 6,658 patients suffering from conditions including trauma, heart attacks, strokes and sepsis, as well as providing neonatal care and transport.

INAER is part of the Avincis Group, which operates two companies in Australia – Australian Helicopters and Bond Helicopters Australia.

Australian Helicopters is based in Queensland and delivers multiple-sector services on an immediate-response basis to state and federal government clients and agencies from Brisbane and eight bases between Torres Strait and Adelaide. Included in its fleet of 19 helicopters are nine multi-engine IFR helicopters for operations over water.

Bond was established to provide energy support services to one of the world’s fastest growing offshore oil and gas markets. The company recently won its first major contract and will start providing services in November this year.

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