Mercy One helicopter emergency medical services at Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines, Iowa, one of the first HEMS operators certified to fly Waas low-level IFR routes, including approaches to local hospitals, recently added a second Waas-capable Bell 429 to its fleet. These IFR routes keep helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft from mixing in IFR airspace. Three of the hospital helipad approaches are Waas-based while another is an approach to a helipad in Stuart, Iowa, that is used as a rendezvous for helicopters and ground ambulances from surrounding counties.
Cessna Aircraft announced the “Sovereign Shield” program yesterday for 2013 Citation Sovereigns, covering all scheduled maintenance and parts costs for these business jets for the first five years or 1,500 flight hours. The program “practically eliminates” maintenance-related direct operating costs for these Citation Sovereigns, Cessna said. According to Cessna, operators covered by the Sovereign Shield program can save more than $3,500 on a 2,000-nm trip compared with operators of competing midsize jets.
Flight departments will have a new federal regulation to contend with regarding hazardous materials. New regulations from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Osha) mandate the training of thousands of flight department employees by December 1 to educate them on how to identify and protect themselves from hazardous chemicals used in the workplace. The Hazard Communication Standard will be fully implemented in 2016.
The U.S. Court of Appeals has unanimously upheld the FAA’s right to impose the mandatory overwater North Shore Route on helicopter traffic over New York’s Long Island. Writing for the Court, U.S. circuit judge Richard Roberts rejected a legal challenge (petition for review) to the route filed by the Helicopter Association International to overturn the mandate.
NBAA has issued a new resource about the net investment income tax (NIIT), having now fully reviewed the U.S. Treasury Department and IRS regulations on this tax, which was enacted as part of the 2010 healthcare overhaul. Beginning this year, the law imposes a 3.8-percent tax on the investment income of certain individuals, and it will affect many common airplane leasing arrangements, NBAA said.
Greenwich AeroGroup announced today that Atlantic Aero in Greensboro, N.C., and Western Aircraft in Boise, Idaho, have received AS9110 quality system certifications. Now all three Greenwich AeroGroup maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) service centers are AS certified. The internationally recognized AS9110 standard focuses on MRO services and is an offshoot of the AS9100 standard that addresses the aviation industry. “We are extremely pleased with these achievements,” said Greenwich AeroGroup senior v-p Jeff Mihalic.
Two $2,100 American Eurocopter scholarship winners will attend a comprehensive training program aimed at improving the safety of air medical transport. Josh Weiland, safety officer for Sanford AirMed Enterprise, based in Sioux Falls, S.D., and Peter Carros, safety manager for Geisinger Health Systems in Danville, Pa., will attend the Safety Management Training Academy conducted annually by the Association of Air Medical Services.
Mxi Technologies announced the latest release of its Maintenix v8 solution designed specifically to support maintenance activities that can transform an aviation organization’s MRO function into a profitable business. Anchored on Mxi’s Avinomic predictive control system, the latest offering in the Maintenix v8 stream offers advanced “Google-like” search capability, a timeline feature to more easily visualize “single window” asset lifecycle data and system extensibility to leverage existing IT investments.
Today at the Paris Air Show, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University president Dr. John Johnson and Diamond Aircraft Industries CEO Christian Dries signed a partnership agreement to establish the aircraft manufacturer’s presence at the university’s Daytona Beach campus. Under the agreement, Diamond will expand its current international research and development program and other initiatives working with Embry-Riddle students, staff and faculty from the university’s engineering and aviation colleges, as well as its Eagle Flight Research Center.
International business travelers seeking simplified entry into the U.S. via the “Global Entry” program will have the opportunity to meet in person with U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at this year’s NBAA Convention, which will be held October 22 to 24 in Las Vegas. Global Entry allows expedited clearance processing into the U.S. for pre-approved, low-risk travelers using automated kiosks available at 34 U.S. airports, eight pre-clearance airports in Canada and two pre-clearance sites in Ireland.