ON THE GROUND
By following some basic rules, you will help to ensure safe flight operations while on the ground and while in the air...
NEVER WALK TOWARDS THE TAIL OF A HELICOPTER
Most helicopters have tail rotors located in the back of the helicopter. The tail rotor spins very fast, is often difficult to see while spinning, and is extremely dangerous.
To ensure safety around helicopters, never walk towards the rear of the helicopter. If you must access the other side of the helicopter, always walk in front –in view of the pilot. Do not duck under the tail boom to get to the other side.
EXIT TO THE FRONT OR DIRECTLY TO THE SIDE OF THE HELICOPTER
While this does NOT apply to all helicopters, this DOES apply to the McMahon helicopter fleet. Always walk in front or directly to the side in view of the pilot. The pilot cannot see you behind the pilot's door on both sides of the helicopter. Keeping the first rule in mind, never walk towards the rear of the helicopter.
NEVER EXIT UPSLOPE & USE CAUTION AT ALL TIMES WHILE UNDER
THE ROTOR SYSTEM OF THE HELICOPTER
If the helicopter is parked on or next to a hill, never exit upslope as you may come in contact with the rotor system above your head. It is good practice to crouch while exiting the helicopter if the rotors are turning.
Many helicopter rotor systems can dip well below 6 feet from the ground level, which can potentially contact a person or object on the ground. Never carry anything above your head such as an umbrella while walking under the rotor system.
Never drive a vehicle underneath the helicopter rotor system regardless of if the blades are turning or stopped. Even the lightest contact with the rotor blades on a helicopter may result in permanent damage to the aircraft.
NO SMOKING in or around the helicopter at anytime. Helicopters contain flammable fuels and oils. Occasionally, residues from these products can drip or leak on the exterior of the helicopter or on the ground during servicing. Open flames around aircraft in general can be extremely hazardous.
Ensure that all personal items such as maps, notebooks, laptop computers, briefcases, etc. are secured before takeoff. The pilot will be happy to assist you if needed.
Fasten your seatbelt and leave it secured until the pilot has powered down the helicopter on the ground or has instructed you to remove it.
Other detailed safety instructions will be provided by your pilot. Always remember, if you're unsure about something, ask. It's better to be safe than sorry.
Let's talk about the weather...
We take your safety very seriously.
For this reason, we often need to postpone or cancel flights due to weather conditions that we feel may compromise your safety. No aircraft in the sky is built to handle all weather conditions that mother nature throws at us. Weather can change by the minute and often changes drastically by the mile.
Not all bad weather conditions show up on weather radar, nor are they always predicted in forecasts. Fog, mist and snow are all examples of conditions that likely will not show up in weather radar and satellite imagery unless it is in its heaviest form. These conditions have the potential to reduce visibilities down to zero. If the pilot cannot see out of the helicopter windows due to weather, he or she must rely solely on the aircraft instruments to safely navigate the helicopter. We as a company, make every effort to avoid this type of situation as possible.
As pilots, we can only base our "go" or "no go" decisions on the weather information that is available to us at the time, so it is critical that we err on the side of safety. In many regions, weather reporting stations are few and far between, which leaves it up to the pilot to guess what conditions may lie ahead.
We understand that making the right decision on weather can be very inconvenient for our customers. We strongly encourage our customers to have a secondary transportation plan by ground whenever possible and if your project involves an aerial survey or tour of numerous locations, have flexible dates in mind.