Canada – North Shore Rescue hoist equipment used, but not certified

Canada – North Shore Rescue hoist equipment used, but not certified

5-Nov-2012 Source: North Shore News

HETS Issue Resolved! Transport Canada and Manufacturer have come to an agreement that will get HETS teams back in the air.

Recently, due to the meticulous work of North Shore Rescue’s equipment officer, a serious issue relating to all the helicopter external transport system (HETS) kits in Canada was brought to light. Although this problem is a serious airworthiness issue, it is not directly related to the safety of the equipment itself but with the legality of its Transport Canada certification. In consideration of the certification issue, after being alerted by NSR, Emergency Management BC (EMBC) suspended – will not issue authorization “ASE number” for its use – HETS province-wide until this matter can be resolved. The certification issues with the kits does not just affect provincial SAR teams, but also: Ski Patrols (eg. Whistler/Blackcomb),  RCMP, BC Hydro, and many commercial operators in the oil/gas/mineral/exploration sectors.

Local, provincial and federal politicians,  the manufacturer and Transport Canada have been engaged to help find a speedy remedy to this situation. The need for HETS in this province cannot be understated. This kit would normally allow for a 3 man team to do a task in 30 minutes that would take a 20 man team 15 hours. It allows for rapid insertions and extraction from deadly terrain, and it keeps the length of the call down. Without this regional based lifesaving tool, people will die.

Editor note – a further article in Pique News is also relevant – see here

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