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SUPERYACHT HELIPORTS - ARE THEY SAFE ENOUGH?


There have been at least another two aircraft accidents involving helicopters resulting in fatal or serious injuries in recent days! The latest involving the tragic death of a 22 year old man who was returning home after celebrating the 'best birthday he ever had' and yet in an instant he endured the catastrophic consequences of being struck by the tail rotor of the helicopter that he had just disembarked! Victim Jack Fenton's parents reflect on their loss in an interview with ITV News - Click here


Whilst these accidents occurred ashore, investigations continue and initial reports suggest that the accidents were avoidable and attract questions regarding safety and operational procedures.


The maritime and aviation industries are highly regulated and yet we are seeing increasing evidence of behaviours within both, specific to superyachts, that suggest safety is, on occasions, being compromised in favour of unnecessary urgency, ill perceived convenience and operational pressure, none of which are necessary in this 'higher risk' activity. As a result Maritime Aviation have recently embarked on an industry education programme with regulators and other relevant stakeholders to improve safety on shipboard heliports.


The world of superyacht aviation is unique in that potentially 'high tempo' helicopter operations take place on a sea-going vessel, landing/taking off in a restricted space, surrounded by obstacles, with little room for error. Helicopter operations of this type have would only normally take place in the military.


Delivering safe and efficient heliport operations is not difficult when you have a comprehensive 'Shipboard Heliport Operations Manual' (SHOM) to refer to, along with appropriately trained, confident and competent crew members who understand the risks involved and are able to promote a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone.


Aviation capable superyachts must have, on board, sufficient crew members with the appropriate training whether their heliports operate commercially or non-commercially (Private), to mitigate the risks to the helicopter, the yacht, the passengers and crew of both.


Maritime Aviation provide MCA approved 'Large Yacht Heliport Safety Training Courses' which includes heliport operating procedures to embark & disembark passengers safely and live helicopter rescue & firefighting at our facilities nr Southampton UK. We can also discuss training at other locations.


To discuss your training requirements, just drop us a line at training@maritimeaviation.com


Maritime Aviation also offer: Heliport Certification Services Heliport Design Consultancy Heliport Equipment & Lighting supply Heliport Refuel System Design and Supply


For any of the above services do not hesitate to contact us at supply@maritimeaviation.com