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Headlines for 2010
Disclaimer: Nordic Rotors has no intention in taking stand in any business related matters whatsoever. We do not publish any speculations, rumours or questionable facts. However, we can obviously not guarantee the absence of factual errors. The content shall not be used as a reference to business associated decisions, nor should it be used in articles or stories covering our subjects. If you find anything on this page that you find misleading or incorrect, please contact us as soon as possible, and we will be happy to correct it.
Saab signs agreement and invests in Air Ambulance
15 December, 2010
[Östersund] Scandinavian Air Ambulance Holding AB has signed an eight-year agreement with Saab. This means, from the start of next year, Saab will take over responsibility for the Group's technical and maintenance personnel and operations for their helicopters and aircraft. Saab also invests MSEK 25 in Scandinavian Air Ambulance convertibles.

Through the agreement, Saab takes the responsibility to deliver technology and maintenance services to Scandinavian Air Ambulance, allowing them to focus solely on aircraft and helicopters operations from bases throughout Sweden and Finland.

“To strengthen and develop our capability in the field of helicopters further is one of Saab’s strategic goals and an important addition to the current activities in the aerospace sector. The agreement is estimated to generate an annual turnover of approximately 50 MSEK during the agreement period”, says Lars-Erik Wige, Senior Vice President Saab and Head of the Support and Services business area.

Today, Scandinavian Air Ambulance performs their missions using a fleet of eight aircraft and seven helicopters. Scandinavian Air Ambulance is the market leader in Sweden within the field of air ambulance services and numbers several of Sweden’s county councils and municipalities among their customers. The majority of the contracts are based on long-term agreements.

“This partnership with Saab is an excellent base for further expansion of the Nordic business venture for Scandinavian Air Ambulance, which after several new agreements in Sweden has their sights set on establishing themselves on the Finnish market. Air ambulance and medical transportation is a rapidly growing business area that will allow us to expand throughout Europe”, says Göran Persson, Chairman of the Board at Scandinavian Air Ambulance.

Certain conditions must be approved before the agreement becomes valid, such as The Swedish Transport Agency.
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Eurocopter’s X3 hybrid aircraft reaches 180 kts
9 December, 2010
[Marignane, France] Eurocopter’s X3 high-speed hybrid helicopter demonstrator, which performed its maiden flight on September 6, 2010, has reached the program’s Step 1 speed objective: attaining a true airspeed of 180 kts in level flight at a reduced level of engine power.
Having already surpassed the speed of a traditional helicopter, the next milestone for the demonstrator is the Step 2 phase at Eurocopter’s headquarters in Marignane, France, where the X3 will enter a second set of flight tests during which it is expected to reach sustained cruise speeds in excess of 220 kts.

The X3 utilizes a Eurocopter Dauphin helicopter airframe. It is equipped with two turboshaft engines that power a five-blade main rotor system, along with two propellers installed on short- span fixed wings. This hybrid configuration creates an advanced transportation system that offers the speed of a turboprop-powered aircraft and the full hover flight capabilities of a helicopter. It is tailored to applications where operational costs, flight duration and mission success depend directly on the maximum cruising speed.

The X3 combines vertical takeoff and landing capabilities with fast cruise speeds of more than 220 kts. Eurocopter envisions a wide range of operations for this concept, including long-distance search and rescue (SAR) missions – benefiting from the hybrid aircraft’s combination of higher cruise speeds with excellent vertical takeoff/landing performance.
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Scandinavian MediCopter takes off in Gällivare
1 December, 2010
[Gällivare] The air ambulance company Scandinavian MediCopter started its EMS operations in Gällivare today. It took off on its first medical call at 17:02 this afternoon. The new contract is valid for 18 months from today, expiring in May 2012. MediCopter will operate an NVG equipped Eurocopter AS 365 N3 Dauphin (SE-JIA) from the base at Vassaraträsk, near the town center. The previous operator, Norrlandsflyg AB, is now leaving Gällivare – its former main base – after decades in the region.

MediCopter is a helicopter branch of Scandinavian AirAmbulance, which is involved in airbourne medical transports throughout the country. MediCopter holds seven EMS helicopters at six bases in Sweden – Gällivare, Lycksele, Östersund, Uppsala, Stockholm (2 in the summers) and Visby. It is flying a fleet of Eurocopter helicopters, with a majority of Dauphins, accompanied by two EC135s and one EC145.
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Robbery pilot sentenced to seven years in prison
7 October, 2010
[Stockholm] The now 35-year-old pilot accused of flying the helicopter on the spectacular robbery in September last year was sentenced in the Södertörn District Court today. The pilot was convicted to imprisonment for seven years for aggravated robbery according to an official Court statement. The court consider it proven that the offender flew the helicopter during the robbery.

A second perpetrator was convicted to seven years in prison for being inside the building during the robbery. Four people were convicted for complicity to aggravated robbery and sentenced in a range of 2-5 years in prison. One person was convicted for protecting criminals and sentenced to imprisonment in one year. The indictment was dismissed on three of the defendants.

The robbery, one of the most spectacular in Swedish history, took place in the early morning of September 23, 2009. A central cash deposit in Västberga (Stockholm) was robbed by a set of criminals that landed on the roof in a stolen Jet Ranger (SE-HON). After escaping in the morning light the aircraft touched down at several locations in Stockholm before it was abandoned in Arninge in northern Stockholm.
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Helicopter damaged in landing mishap
16 September, 2010
[Tärnaby] An R44 helicopter was damaged during a landing mishap near Lake Boksjön, east of Tärnaby, earlier today. The aircraft, carrying two on board, struck bad weather whilst en-route to Arvidsjaur. The pilot elected to turn back to the base in Tärnaby, but in connection to the turn the pilot ended up having to perform an emergency landing in a nearby wetland. The aircraft settled in the swampy ground, resulting in damage to the helicopter as water was ingested into the engine.
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New AW139 SAR Training Centre In Scandinavia
21 July, 2010
[Gothenburg] AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica Company, and Osprey Training of Sweden announced today that they have signed an agreement for the establishment of a fully integrated Search and Rescue Training Centre in Sweden, based on the AW139 medium twin turbine helicopter. Under this agreement, the Centre will supply advanced AgustaWestland-authorised training services to pilots, crewmen and maintenance technicians from AW139 operators across the Scandinavian and Baltic regions. The purpose-built Training Centre will be situated Gothenburg and is expected to achieve operational readiness by mid-2012.

Osprey Training is a newly created company to emerge from Norrlandsflyg AB, the largest helicopter operator and the only SAR operator in Sweden. Norrlandsflyg is a Swedish company based in Gothenburg, which has successfully been delivering Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) since 1970 and Search & Rescue (SAR) for the Swedish Government since 2002.

The creation of the first AgustaWestland-approved training centre in Scandinavia will initially be certified in accordance with the Swedish CAA, with the intention of expanding into EASA and FAA regulated training at the earliest possible date. This is aimed at extending AgustaWestland’s AW139 world class helicopter training to a regionally based SAR operator and training provider. The training centre will be equipped with a dual-certified AW139 Level 3 Flight Training Device / Level B Full Flight Simulator and further training devices to deliver AW139 pilot and maintenance engineer training alongside SAR mission-specific training.

Setting up a training centre in Sweden will enable AgustaWestland to better serve existing and potential new customers in the area, particularly those operating in the Oil & Gas industry, offshore wind farm industry and the SAR market.
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Helicopter accident during emergency training
17 July, 2010
[Vilhelmina] Two pilots were involved in an accident as their Hughes 369D helicopter crashed during an emergency training at the Sagadal Airfield on Saturday. The pilots were conducting a full-down autorotation landing when, apparently, one of the skids got stuck in the ground at the very end of the procedure and the aircraft turned over, damaging the helicopter. The two pilots onboard, one of them being a highly experienced flight instructor, did not sustain any injuries.

The accident took place at the Sagadal Airfield, which is situated south-east of the town Vilhelmina in northern Sweden. It is currently being examined by the Swedish Accident Investigation Board.
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Helicopter damaged at training accident in Jönköping
29 June, 2010
[Jönköping] A Schweizer 300CBi was involved in an accident at the Axamo Airport in Jönköping earlier today. The two occupants - one flight examiner and one pilot - got out of the wreck themselves, but were taken to the hospital. The accident, which occurred while practicing an autorotation, is being examined by the Swedish Accident Investigation Board.
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Patria awarded new Police Maintenance Contract
31 May, 2010
[Stockholm] Patria Helicopters AB has been awarded the contract to maintain Swedish Police helicopters EC135 & Bell 206 Jet Ranger. The new maintenance contract is valid from 2011 till 2016 and it includes an option for three more years. The total value of the contract is some EUR 35 million.

“We consider this contract to confirm that our helicopter maintenance operations are reliable and cost-effective. It is also is a clear sign that Patria is a trusted partner in Sweden. The helicopter cooperation between Patria and the Swedish Police has been going on since 1964”, says Jukka Holkeri, Chief Marketing Officer of Patria.

Patria has supported the fleets with similar helicopters of the Finnish Skärgårdshavets Helikoptertjänst Ab (SHT) and Copterline both operating ambulance flights.

Patria has acted as Eurocopter subcontractor and Authorised Service Center since 2001 maintaining EC helicopters but also performing final assembly of NH90. Patria has been maintaining Bell helicopters since 1946 and received recognition as Bell Helicopter’s Platinum Level Customer Service Facility (CSF) for 2009 and 2010.

Patria is a defence, security and aerospace group with international operations delivering its customers competitive solutions based on own specialist know-how and partnerships. Patria is owned by the State of Finland and the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company EADS N.V.
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Helicopter crashed in Oslofjorden near Horten, Norway
27 January, 2010
[Horten] In the afternoon of January 27th, a Robinson R44 Astro with four occupants crashed in the ice cold water of Oslofjorden near Horten, Norway.

According to the Norwegian newspaper VG.no the helicopter was in formation with another helicopter on their way back to Oslo on a taxi flight from Tønsberg when the accident occurred. A distress message was sent to Rygge airport prior to the crash VG says.

Many people became witness to the accident. The helicopter hit the water not more than 150 meters from land one witness said.

A large search and rescue team have been searching with both divers and mini submarines during the evening. Due to weather the SAR helicopter has difficulties to fly in the area police said. Photos from the crash site reveal that the weather was poor with heavy fog.

The crashed occurred at approximately 14:30 local time. At 19:15 no survivors nor the wreckage had been found.

Update: At 21:30 divers found the wreckage with the four persons inside. The police hope to salvage the helicopter during the night.
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