3-Mar-2015 Source: Airbus
As one of the nation’s premier providers of full service, exclusive Electronic News Gathering (ENG) helicopters, U.S. Helicopters Inc. is continuing replacement of older aircraft with the addition of three new Airbus Helicopters AS350 B2 AStars.
Two of the new aircraft, purchased in 2014, are already in service in the top five U.S. television markets. A third AS350 B2 will be placed into service in the southwestern U.S. later this year. U.S. Helicopters began its fleet renewal plan in 2009, upgrading to newer equipment and technology to meet growing customer needs in a demanding industry.
“We took delivery of eight new AS350 B2 and B3 AStar helicopters over the past six years, all leading to standardizing our fleet with Airbus Helicopters for more efficient service delivery for our customers,” said Cress Horne, President and CEO of U.S. Helicopters.
“It’s been our plan to standardize with the AS350 B2 for some time now,” said Greg Parsons, General Manager of U.S. Helicopters. “Budgets can be tight these days for many news operations, but the improved reliability of new B2 aircraft provides the cost benefit we need to better service our customers. Airbus Helicopters technical support has been exceptional as well.”
Completed at the company’s headquarters in North Carolina, the AS350 B2s include a U.S. Helicopters designed operator/engineer console in the cabin to support larger and heavier equipment. The aircraft provide additional payload, speed, and hover capability, and on-station time performance, all critical requirements for electronic news gathering missions. U.S. Helicopters designed and certified the modular console so it can be easily installed, removed or modified.
“We appreciate the continued confidence shown by U.S. Helicopters in the AS350 AStar and their efforts to place new aircraft into service,” said Treg Manning, Vice President Sales and Marketing for Airbus Helicopters Inc. “We are very aware of the tough economic climate in which they operate, and we sincerely appreciate their loyalty and support.”
Built and certified in the United States, the cost-effective AS350 B2 is a single-engine workhorse with the best performance in its category. Enhanced maneuverability, reduced pilot workload and low operating costs make it the preferred rotary-wing aircraft for a growing number of market segments. The AStar has low acquisition and direct operating costs.
For more information on Airbus Helicopters AS350 AStars and other industry leading products, stop by Airbus Helicopters Booth #2437 at Heli-Expo 2015 in Orlando.
About Airbus Helicopters Inc.
Airbus Helicopters Inc. is the U.S. affiliate of Airbus Helicopters, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and a subsidiary of the Airbus Group. Airbus Helicopters Inc. is a manufacturer, markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and parapublic helicopters offered in the U.S. The product line represents the industry’s most cost-effective, technologically-advanced helicopters serving all markets and missions. The company’s headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, Texas with a large manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, Miss.