Aviation Specialties Unlimited, (ASU) honored the first annual Night Vision Award winners at a luncheon this afternoon during Heli-Expo in Orlando, Florida.Â This is the first of three ceremonies that will be held in 2011.Â The next award reception will be held in New Orleans at the ALEA and in St. Louis at AMTC.
â€œIt is an honor to recognize all the recipients this year,â€ said founder and CEO of ASU Mike Atwood, â€œThere are so many organizations and people out there everyday using night vision to help their communities. We were glad to honor some of them today.â€
Winners were selected for 5-year service award, 10-year service award, Community Awareness Award, International Advancement Award and Mark of Excellence Award.
5- Year Service Award Winners:
Air St. Lukes, Fairfax County Police Helicopter Division, Intermountain LifeFlight, Seminole County Sherriffâ€™s Office Aviation Unit, and the Snohomish County Sherriffâ€™s Department received 5-year Service awards.
10-Year Service Award Winners:
The Santa Barbara Sherriffâ€™s Department Aviation Unit and the Sonoma County Sherriffâ€™s Office Helicopter Unit received 10-Year Service Awards.
Community Awareness Award Winner:
Era MED LLC, and Geisinger Life Flight received the Community Awareness Award.Â This award is given to flight operations that demonstrate proven leadership and pioneering Night Vision Goggle flights in their community, raise awareness about the need for Night Vision Goggles, help other organizations obtain Night Vision Goggles or work to bring goggles to their own fleet to enhance safety in their community.Â Captain Curt Haldeman and his EMS flight crew were called in to search for a missing fixed wing that had crashed in the mountain of Pennsylvania.Â Using night vision equipment, Captain Haldeman and his crew were able to locate a downed plane in mountainous terrain and able to save a life.Â This difficult situation brought awareness of how important night vision flights are and how lives are saved almost everyday because of night vision.
International Advancement Award:
Global Aerospace Logistics (GAL) located in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates won the International Advancement Award.Â This award is given to a person that champions the need for Night Vision Goggles and systems outside of North America.Â They introduced night vision flying to their entire country and have their Chief Pilot has logged more than 6,000 night vision flight hours since beginning the program. Most of these hours have come from training others to use night vision goggles.Â Border patrol, offshore well operations and law enforcement have adopted using night vision since GAL pioneered it in their country.
Mark of Excellence Award:
Metro Aviation was chosen as the Mark of Excellence Award winner.Â This award recognizes an organization that signifies dedication to quality and excellence in their operation.Â Metro Aviation is the first operation to equip their entire operation 100% with night vision goggles.Â Metro Aviation has 47 bases and 62 aircraft. They have 270 fully trained pilots.
â€œWe received so many nominations that it was difficult to choose.Â Fortunately we will highlight these great organizations three times a year.Â I encourage people to continue to send in nominations for the next award ceremony at ALEA.Â I want to congratulate not only our award recipients today, but also the men and women that fly with them everyday to keep our world safe,â€ said Atwood.
Since 1995, ASUâ€™s goal has been to implement night vision in the civil aviation market to increase operational safety and improve mission capabilities. Our focus is on providing a turnkey solution to our customers so that with one call they can obtain:
- Night vision goggles and replacement parts
- Service/inspection for goggles
- NVG cockpit lighting solutions, installed by our FAA-approved 145 repair station technicians at our facility in Boise, Idaho, or at the customerâ€™s facility
- Cockpit replacement parts provided by our FAA-approved PMA
- Initial and recurrent training for flight crews on the use of night vision via an FAA-approved 141 Training Program and/or 135 Air Operator Certificate
- Assistance in establishing Night Vision Programs.
To date, ASU has sold over 2,500 aviator systems within the U.S.
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