14-Oct-2020 Source: HALO-Flight
Bringing innovation to aviation while ensuring operational safety is not new to HALO-Flight; but, the recently acquired Bell 407GXi brings the South Texas air medical service into national focus with the first, FAA approved, single engine, single pilot IFR air medical helicopter.
HALO-Flight’s newest aircraft is also Bell’s first 407 IFR (instrument flight rules) aircraft capable of operating off instruments verses the more traditional visual flight rules design. Bell’s IFR-certified platform comes with more than six million proven global flight hours enabling HALO-Flight to navigate all-weather operations and complete critical missions despite low cloud ceilings in many incidents.
“The most sophisticated helicopter technology in the world,” explained Tom Klassen, HALO-Flight Executive Director, “is now available for South Texans whose lives may depend on air ambulance transport.”
Klassen stated that “This aircraft features the Garmin G1000H NXi avionics system for enhanced pilot awareness, three axis autopilot, redundant electrical system, and enhanced FADEC engine control. Wireless connectivity allows our pilots to quickly sync flight plans from portable EFB devices to decrease launch times.”
“The Bell 407GXi’s proven reliability, outstanding payload, and economic operating cost now combined with the capability to operate IFR” said Klassen. “is a transformative change for the air medical industry.”
HALO-Flight has a record of being first in the nation with aviation innovations. To assist the pilot in inadvertent weather situations the first NTSB recommended HeliSAS two axis auto pilot was installed in HALO-Flight’s legacy aircraft. Working with our partners at Bell, the first ballistic windshields were installed in all HALO-Flight aircraft as soon as they were available to prevent a catastrophic accident in the event of a bird strike.
HALO-Flight’s newest aircraft ensures this next-generation of technology will give HALO-Flight enhanced capabilities to serve seriously injured and ill patients in this area and accommodate interfacility transfers to higher levels of care.