Thursday, August 17, 2017

Aviator Group / Heli-Aust Whitsundays Airbus Helicopters H135 VH-ZGP

Heli-Aust Whitsundays took delivery of two, new-build Airbus Helicopters H135's (formerly known as the EC-135 T3/P3) earlier this year for marine pilot operations with subsidiary companies, Mackay Helicopters and Gladstone Helicopters.

Registered VH-ZGH and VH-ZGP, both choppers are 2017 manufactured machines and were assembled in Germany before being shipped to Australia for delivery to the Aviator Group, owners of Heli-Aust Whitsundays.

First formed in 1992 as Eurocopter Group which existed until renamed in 2014, Airbus Helicopters is the helicopter manufacturing division of Airbus, and has reportedly grown since inception 25 years ago to become the industry's current largest in terms of revenue and turbine helicopter deliveries.

Nestled among a wide variety of helicopters manufactured by Airbus, the H135 is marketed as one of the company's most successful light aircraft due to it's reliable, durable, versatile and cost-effective track record.

Airbus also claims the H135 twin-engine helicopter can perform many different missions, land almost anywhere, particularly high and hot, while carrying more payload over longer distances than other rotorcraft in it's category.

As previously mentioned, VH-ZGH and VH-ZGP were acquired by the Aviator Group to provide Marine Pilot Transfers to off-shore ships bound for Gladstone and Mackay Harbour as part of a Maritime Safety Queensland contract on behalf of the Queensland Government. While this contract has been held by the company for a number of years now, the transfers were previously satisfied by older Eurocopter EC-135's. 

Of interest, the Aviator Group itself is among the larger and more experienced providers of general aviation services in Australia with duties including Search and Rescue (SAR), Marine Pilot Transfer, Executive Charter, Utility, Contract Services, Electronic News Gathering, Tourism and Film & Photography.