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Helijet And Coulson Work It Out


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Helijet And Coulson Increase Capacity On Vancouver-Victoria Route With S61


Richmond, BC(September 7, 2005): Helijet International, North America’s leading scheduled helicopter service, is increasing capacity on its popular Vancouver-Victoria commuter route effective September 19, with the addition of Executive Transport Airways’ 23-passenger Sikorsky S61. Executive, part of the Coulson Group of Companies, is recognized as a leading operator of S61 aircraft in North America.


“We’ve worked out a one year term, with possible extensions,” noted Helijet’s President and CEO, Danny Sitnam. “Executive Transport will support certain flights on our behalf from our Vancouver and Victoria terminals. The new 23-passenger helicopter will increase our Monday-to-Friday capacity by a further 400 seats per week, particularly during the morning and afternoon peak periods. As a result, we are very pleased to be working with the Coulson Group, and like others in our business, recognize their strong reputation when it comes to operating the larger S61 aircraft.”


Coulson Group President and CEO, Wayne Coulson, said the working relationship with Helijet gives Executive Transport Airways the opportunity to demonstrate its passenger capabilities within Helijet’s network.


“Helijet has a well-earned reputation for service and reliability, and by working together I think our two organizations can build on the capacity and frequency of commuter service between the capital and Vancouver,” explained Coulson. “The S61 is a well proven and highly reliable piece of equipment. The newly appointed stand-up interior is extremely comfortable, with plenty of space to work during the 35-minute flight.”


The agreement between Helijet and Coulson ends a dispute between the two companies over Coulson’s interest in starting its own scheduled service between Vancouver and Victoria.


“Frankly, it made more sense to have our two companies work together,” added Sitnam. “We have the infrastructure, online reservation system and a 19 year history flying between the Island the mainland. The addition of the 23-seat S61 certainly adds to the level of service we can offer our customers.”


“We wanted to put this aircraft to work, and by teaming up with Helijet, we can deliver further customer value to the table,” said Coulson. “It’s a win all round, for us, for Helijet and for passengers heading between Victoria and Vancouver.”


With the addition of the S61, Helijet will offer up to 176 flights each week between Vancouver, Victoria and YVR. One-way fares start at $140, with passengers able to book online at www.helijet.com

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Why did HeliJet get rid of their own 61 a few years back? Was their market just not ready to support it then?


I heard that the prev 61 almost slid off the Vanc pad on one occasion and was saved only by a calm crew and a brave ramp worker who managed to unsnag a wheel from a safety net above the water. It seems to me that this incident may have been the final straw for the last 61 program but surely that wasn't the only reason.

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