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March 3, 2017 - Coalition Associations Meet with Minister Garneau
On February 7, four associations met with Minister Garneau to discuss our concerns with the looming publication of new Fatigue Management Regulations in Canada Gazette I – the first step in the public consultation phase. The new rules - when they become final - would come in to force roughly five years later. The four national associations have joined with five other Regional Associations representing the interests of all segments of the commercial aviation community from across Canada, to oppose the proposed new rules in their current form.
March 3, 2017 - HAC's 2017 Spring Reception – sponsored by StandardAero - will be held in Winnipeg at the Fort Garry Hotel from 5 to 7pm on April 6. All Operators and Suppliers are most welcome to attend. Please feel free to invite any prospective Members or Associates to participate. HAC would like to extend its thanks to StandardAero for their generous sponsorship of the event. A tour of the StandardAero Winnipeg facilities will take place in the morning of April 7 - time to be determined. A complimentary shuttle will be provided for those that would like to participate. Please RSVP to email@example.com
March 3, 2017 - HAC will be exhibiting at HAI in Dallas again this year. Stop by to visit with us at our HAC Booth, #6617 and pick up some Canadian swag.
Please also join us at the CONNECT TO CANADA EVENT to be held at the following time, date, and location:
Tuesday, 7 March 2017 from 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM (CST)
Fair Park 1 Room on the 3rd floor of the Omni Hotel
555 S Lamar St
Dallas, Texas 75202
March 3, 2017 -
Transport Canada is planning to hold a Fitness for Flight Workshop June 6-7 2017 in the Casino Lac Leamy, to dialogue with industry over a variety of issues relating to Drug & Alcohol, and psychological fitness for flight – excluding notably, Fatigue Management. Watch the Newsletter for more details to follow.
February 16, 2017 - HAC's 2017 Convention & Tradeshow Moves to a New Format
HAC's 2017 Ottawa Convention dates have shifted slightly from November 10-12 2017 to November 9-11 2017. In a move from its traditional Friday-through-Sunday format, HAC's Ottawa Convention dates have moved to a Thursday-through-Saturday format to accommodate attendance by delegates at the 2017 Remembrance Day services at the War Memorial, nearby the Host Hotel – the Ottawa WESTIN.
February 16, 2017 - In spite of many complaints from industry that the proposed new Fatigue Management Regulations are more suited to CAR 705 international operations, than to CAR 703/704 Operations, Transport Canada has released DRAFT Fatigue Risk Management Systems (FRMS) Guidance Material that is also not suited to small operators.
FRMS was intended to provide a safer, more flexible alternative to the prescriptive DRAFT regulations. But HAC's President said “HAC believes that the FRMS Guidance Material, as currently drafted is largely beyond the reach of smaller fixed-wing and helicopter operators, and in its current form will force operators to use the oppressive prescriptive regulations currently being advanced by Transport Canada. If Transport Canada continues to move forward with these proposed new regulations, they will come in to force at a huge cost to our customers and our industry – without any attendant improvement to safety”. Operators are invited to comment on the DRAFT Guidance Material to firstname.lastname@example.org by March 10 2017. HAC will be consolidating comments from operators in an Association submission to Transport Canada.
Read a WORKING DRAFT of the proposed new Regulations
Read the DRAFT FRMS Guidance Material
Read the DRAFT Guidance Material for the DRAFT Prescriptive Fatigue Management Regulations
February 16, 2017 - As you may recall, last July, in the heart of the operating season, Transport Canada, without consulting with any industry association on its content, and without notice, invited Operators of all sizes to complete a survey on the cost of the proposed new Fatigue Management Regulations for flight crew members. The survey was being conducted in support of the Regulatory Impact Analysis Survey (RIAS) that accompanies the publication of DRAFT Regulations in Canada Gazette I. You may also recall that they refused to consider any potential effect that the new rules could have on revenue. READ MORE
February 16, 2017 - Since 2014, when HAC partnered with MultiView to produce its weekly HAC Communique, it has been distributed to the inboxes of over 1000 industry professionals every Thursday, and features hand-curated articles related to the Canadian helicopter industry. Select industry suppliers also have the opportunity to advertise in this publication, allowing your company to push its message directly to our subscribers' inboxes and take advantage of the association's brand affinity. On occasion, a MultiView marketing consultant may reach out to you about the opportunity. MultiView is the association world's largest B2B publisher and has a long history of selling digital advertising positions into association publications.
MultiView's briefs combine the authority of our association with the relevancy of top industry content to put your business in front of potential buyers in a way that makes you stand out. With industry-leading open rates and full-service creative and account management teams, your company connects with your niche audience in a direct way they're sure to see. So why advertise in our publication? Here are some great reasons:READ MORE
February 10, 2017 - Al Eustis May 28, 1933 - December 20, 2016
Al's love for aviation began when he started watching RCAF aircraft depart from the Boundary Bay airport from the south slope of Burnaby.
He joined the RCAF Reserve forces and transferred to the Regular Forces in the hope that he would be trained as a pilot, but instead he was commissioned as an Aircrew Radio Officer. He found it interesting, but it was not really what he wanted to do and his job was becoming redundant because VHF radios were making communications directly from the cockpit, easier.
February 10, 2017 - HAC and CCAA are working together to enhance knowledge of the demand for skilled workers in aviation and aerospace manufacturing; what kind of people are needed? Which occupations? What skills are most in demand? How long does it take you to hire for certain job vacancies? What can the Canadian government do to make hiring and training the right people easier?
With a clear knowledge of what industry needs, HAC can help government formulate policies and provide programs to support the human resource needs of our members. Canada's aviation and aerospace companies could not just meet current needs, but could prepare for growth. We ask that you assign time to respond to questions about your workforce, either online, or through a call or visit with a CCAA interviewer to help us understand your needs.
Please contact CCAA with questions or to arrange an interview, or follow this link directly to participate in the current study. READ MORE
February 10, 2017 - Recently, Emond Harnden LLP released an Aviation Law Briefing on this topical issue, that can be found at : READ MORE
February 10, 2017 - HAC is pleased to announce that Standard Aero will be sponsoring our Spring Reception in Winnipeg on April 6 2017. Stay-tuned to the Newsletter for more details on the location of the event.
The next morning, the reception will be followed by a tour of the Standard Aero facilities at Winnipeg Airport. Thank-you, Standard Aero!
January 18, 2017 - In the last issue of the HAC Newsletter, you may recall we identified some concerns that were raised with the association relating to ACP Monitor Rides, historically carried out by Transport Canada from the rear of the helicopter. READ MORE
January 18, 2017 - Recently, you may have been contacted by HAC to participate in our Fatigue Management Advocacy Campaign. Selected members were urged to participate with the association in our efforts to oppose the oppressive new Fatigue Management regime that is being proposed by Transport Canada. HAC is working closely with other like-minded Associations and communities from across Canada who recognize that these proposed regulations are not supported by the fatigue-related science, and that they will not improve safety – but will erode safety – at a huge cost to the commercial aviation community and the customers and communities that we serve. If you have any questions on this subject, please contact email@example.com
January 18, 2017 - The CTA has embarked on Phase II of its Regulatory Modernization Review, and they have circulated the following Discussion Paper for consultation purposes. Members with comments, should forward them to HAC at firstname.lastname@example.org., or directly to the CTA at email@example.com, , with a copy to HAC. HAC will be making a submission on behalf of our Operator-Members.
January 10, 2017 - Transport Canada Struggling to Preserve CARAC in the Face of Financial Limitations …
The CARAC Plenary took place on December 13th in Ottawa, and it was clear that Transport Canada was struggling to preserve the essential elements of a process that was designed to receive meaningful input from industry, in the face of ever-increasing financial limitations. The CARAC Plenary, which has historically been held once each year to review how the process is functioning, has not been held for three years – which is already a pretty good indication of the priority that the Department attaches to the process.
January 10, 2017 - Just prior to Christmas, Minister Garneau announced his intention raise the foreign ownership limit from 25% to 49%. The change, while it will not apply to CAR 702 certificate holders, will apply to all CAR 703, 704, and 705 operators. The move is being made over the objections of virtually all the national associations representing the interests of Commercial air operators. The Minister intends to limit the ability of any one foreign shareholder to hold more than 25% of the voting shares.
January 10, 2017 - A number of operators have contacted HAC about the refusal of some Transport Canada Inspectorate staff to conduct Monitor Rides from the rear seat of helicopters.
In a discussion with HAC, Transport Canada has raised concerns over safety, and the ability of Inspectors to effectively monitor the ride being conducted, from the rear seat. Concerns have been raised by inspectors about their safety if they are not buckled up. Furthermore, the department has raised concerns over the effectiveness of a monitor ride conducted from the rear of the helicopter, under any circumstances, owing to awkward geometry for surveillance from the rear of most helicopters. Inspectors are also struggling with a lack of recent experience on some types of helicopters. HAC has offered to work with Transport Canada to help resolve these thorny issues.
January 10, 2017 - Employer claim for reimbursement of training bond as per employment agreement - Employee failed to prove constructive dismissal - Employer awarded full training bond.
[The following article is being circulated at the request of the HAC TDG Committee]
With the arrival of the cold and snow in many remote regions, many operators will be engaged in Avalanche Control operations for their clients.
So, in response to several questions from its membership, the HAC Dangerous Goods Committee has put out a short clarification on what this requires from a DG perspective.
TDG Regulation 12.12(1)(e) mentions Avalanche Control as an activity that is clearly covered as a valid Aerial Work activity. This means that an Equivalency Certificate IS NOT required for Avalanche Control operations.
However, along with observance of the general TDG regulations, the following basic conditions and procedures will need to be followed:
• the person who loads and secures the dangerous goods on board the aircraft must be trained, or works under the direct supervision of a person who is trained in the Dangerous Goods regulations and procedures;
• if the dangerous goods are handled or transported by a person other than an employee of the air carrier, that person must be trained as well in both Dangerous Goods, as well as trained and certified in the handling of the explosives they will be using;
• If the dangerous goods are loaded onboard the aircraft by the pilot-in-command or by an individual under his direct supervision, a NOTOC form is not required. Otherwise the person who loads and secures the dangerous goods must give the pilot-in-command a written document with the item’s shipping name, UN number, class, and the gross mass of the dangerous goods and, in the case of explosives, the net explosives quantity;
• the operator must have clear and documented operational guidelines and procedures for avalanche control operations;
• the pilot-in-command must be informed of the nature and quantity of the explosive to be used, as well as any special operational or safety considerations to be observed;
• in the event of a dangerous goods incident or emergency, the incident must be reported to CANUTEC and any other related agencies as soon as possible, as per TDG Part 8 regulations;
• The nature of the operation should be annotated on the flight document.
As with everything else in this industry, it’s all about managing the risks and bringing everybody back safely.
Stay Safe and have a Great Winter Season,
The HAC Dangerous Goods Committee
December 16, 2016 - Sausages and the CARs …
Mark Twain once said, "Those that respect the law and love sausage should watch neither being made." Sadly, Mr. Twain's statement aptly applies to the process leading up to the coming-in-to-force of many regulations – including the CARs. I am constantly amazed by the variety of forces that influence the evolution of our regulatory environment. HAC applauds the government's efforts to move toward "evidence-based decision making", but we still have a long way to go. In life, and in law-making, sometimes it is more gratifying (and less depressing) to remind ourselves "where we have come from", rather than "where we would like to be".
December 16, 2016 - Recently Transport Canada approved a new flight manual supplement for the Sikorsky S76C helicopters used by Helijet. Approval of the new supplement follows months of intensive collaboration between BCEHS, Helijet, Maxcraft Avionics, Sikorsky Aircraft and Transport Canada to test and validate certain flight operating procedures for the aircraft.
December 16, 2016 - Transport Canada has acknowledged that the industry could benefit from a better understanding of the performance requirements for H1 Heliports, and they are preparing a document that can be used as an aid by industry for the purpose of determining whether the aircraft that they operate are in compliance with the regulations. A number of questions were raised by members on this subject at HAC's recent Convention in Edmonton.
December 16, 2016 - The long-overdue Canadian Aviation Regulatory Advisory Council (CARAC) Plenary will take place on December 13 2016, in Ottawa. One of the items under review will be the CARAC Charter, which provides a roadmap for the consultation process with stakeholders – a process originally crafted over ten years ago, to facilitate the input of industry on Transport Canada's regulatory initiatives. In the last ten years, the process was used to generate hundreds of regulatory amendments – all but a very few have been abandoned by Transport Canada.
The new process, modified to reflect the ability of the regulator to accommodate a very few regulatory changes each year, and to reduce the number of costly and time-consuming face-to-face meetings under the old system, HAC believes has been crafted to primarily recognize the economic realities faced by the Department.
November 24, 2016 - HAC's Convention Lived Up to the Hype
By all accounts the Convention was a resounding success. Five Static Display aircraft arrived and departed uneventfully from the Edmonton Convention Centre. I was particularly impressed by the willingness of ALL company personnel to help everyone move their aircraft on to the floor. There was an extraordinary effort (with the aid of a shoehorn and some axel grease) to get Black Swan's Bell 204 through the Convention Centre's bay door. We had 35 people on the pre-landing and pre-take off FOD-walks. Thank-you all for pitching in!
November 24, 2016 - A number of delegates in YEG commented that it may be time to canvass members and associates on the timing for the Convention. The last couple of years we have scheduled the convention to take place on the Remembrance Day weekend. In the same survey, HAC has agreed to invite members to comment on Mid-week versus weekend; and on our current West-West-East format for the selection of Convention venues. Some have suggested that we should be moving to a Vancouver-Vancouver-East format. As it is, we are committed to Ottawa in 2017 on the Remembrance Day weekend during the 100th Anniversary of Vimy Ridge.
The convention will break to allow those who wish to attend, the opportunity to walk to the Remembrance Day ceremony at the War Memorial – just two blocks from the Westin Ottawa. As you may know, 2017 is also the 150th Anniversary of Canada, so there will be lots going on in Bytown! In 2018, we will be back in Vancouver again, but after that, it is anyone's guess!
Owing to the busy Fall convention period, and the limited number of Convention Centre venues that can accommodate our growing show, HAC has been driven to book our venues at least two years in advance
November 24, 2016 - There were three Operator-Director positions up for election in Edmonton. Jen Norie of VIH and Jacob Forman of Yellowhead were re-elected, and Rob Gallagher of Coldstream was elected. Your current Board of Directors is as follows:
Sylvain Seguin, CHL, Chair
Brad Fandrich, Valley Helicopters, Vice
Jen Norie, VIH, Corporate Secretary (Re-Elected)
Jacob Forman, Yellowhead, Treasurer (Re-Elected)
Shane Cyr, UHNL
Brian Clegg, Skyline
Steve Williams, Emond Harnden LLP
Maury Wood, Avialta
Rob Gallagher, Coldstream (Newly Elected)
November 24, 2016 - As I was running through the Edmonton Shaw Convention Centre, a number of members managed to slow me down long enough to bend my ear on some outstanding issue. Here are a few them, in no particular order:
1. Levels of Service from Transport Canada – It is taking 90 days to have an aircraft registration processed. Upon the importation of an aircraft, the entire importation process can be completed with a Certificate of Airworthiness issued, and yet the aircraft must sit on the ground, not generating revenue or available for private use as the Certificate of Registration has not been processed.
2. Commercial Operators access to SURs, CADs, IPBs, MSIs and similar publications, should be reinstated. Denying access to these documents negatively affects aviation safety in Canada.
3. Regional Disparity – there are huge difference between regions across Canada that are evident across a broad range of services, including applications for Low Flying Permits, Service Levels, Regulatory interpretations, to name only a few.
4. Termination of the CAIRS System. It is no longer possible to have a higher authority review an interpretation that has been provided by the Region.
October 13, 2016 - There is no Handicapped Parking in the Jungle — How HAC Tries to Develop Policy that Transcends the Business Interests of a Few Individual Operators
I am often asked how the Association arrives at an "industry position" on any given issue. My answer is rooted in a few basic principles that I have tried to apply over the years, across associations that...
October 13, 2016 - HAC is preparing to launch its new website. The new site has updated content and a more user-friendly format. Members or Associates with helicopter photos they would like to see on the website should forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org
October 13, 2016 - Last week, HAC and CHL participated in a Transport Canada-sponsored Risk Assessment of CAR 702 operations. Transport Canada is reviewing the manner in which this segment of the aviation community (both fixed-wing and helicopter) is being oversighted. All but two of Canada's CAR 702 Helicopter Operators also hold CAR 703 AOCs, and some held CAR 604 POCs, too.
Unlike most Risk Assessments, where the risk of a specific change is assessed, this Risk Assessment considered a broad spectrum of alternatives to traditional oversight for this segment of the industry, including complete deregulation; further delegations of authority for specific industry segments; Regulatory Stewardship (similar to the Canadian Business Aviation Association program from eight years ago), and many others.
Transport Canada will be using the RA process to evaluate the current allocation of their inspectorate resources, with a view to determining the most efficient ways to improve the safety of CAR 702 operations, while at the same time coping with the prospect of reduced funding for Transport Canada.
October 13, 2016 - All indications are that the response to Transport Canada's Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement (RIAS) Survey has been underwhelming. Our last report, from two weeks ago, indicated that Transport has received about 30 responses. "There has been no shortage of feedback to HAC, however", said HAC's President & CEO". He went on to say, "Operators were confused by the incomplete summary of the regulations that accompanied the RIAS survey, but it is still clear that the latest proposal has not come far enough to accommodate the unique requirements of our industry".
As part of an advocacy campaign that will be closely aligned with other like-minded Associations, members will be invited to work together with HAC and their Federal MPs over the Christmas period to highlight the damaging effect that the latest proposed regulations would have on the helicopter industry, and on the customers and communities that they serve.
More details relating to the latest chapter in this saga will be made known to members in the coming few weeks, and we will enlisting your support and assistance to make your views on this critically important subject known to your elected representatives, prior to their publication for comment in Gazette I in the Spring of 2017.
HAC's Convention Courses are filling up fast, so don't delay!
October 13, 2016 - Book at the Chateau LaCombe HERE.
Or contact the hotel directly at Tel: 780-428-6611
Toll Free: 1-800-661-8801
block code: Hel_001
Visit the HAC Convention Page for other options, when these fill up! READ MORE
Are you involved in human external cargo (HEC) operations? If so, you will be interested to know that Transport Canada (TC) has approached HAC to help organize a Working Group to ensure the equipment you are using to carry those people outside your helicopters is, and continues to be, safe.
Canadian regulations require that equipment used for HEC operations is approved for that purpose, but for some harnesses that are used by some Canadian operators to carry people outside their helicopters, the required approval does not exist. TC needs input from the operating and supplier communities so that they can finalize a Global Exemption that will be the basis for continued use of certain harnesses, which comply with its terms. Operators will work with TC Regional offices to make use of this exemption, when it is finalized.
Within an agreed-upon period of time after being granted the exemption it is expected that all harnesses will be approved using a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC). There will be an Advisory Circular (AC) developed by TC to help Operators and Inspectors interpret and apply the terms of the regulations as they apply to the certification of harnesses that will be used during HEC operations. The AC will be used by STC applicants and TC to ensure that requirements for certification are clearly understood and consistently applied. TC intends to consult with industry during development of the AC. TC is working with the HAC Class D sub–committee of the HAC Air Taxi committee to consult with industry as they move forward with this initiative.
Please monitor the HAC Newsletter for more information as it becomes available.
Courtesy of GSH, I had a chance to experience a hoist demonstration in YVR – at what most pilots would agree, was the wrong end of the rope - played at our Keynote Luncheon:
CTA Report Released
Late last week, the Canada Transportation Act (CTA) Review Report was released (see the CTA Review Report article, below). It contains a wide variety of recommendations touching on many segments of the Canadian Transportation sector, including the Air, Rail, and Marine modes. The report also serves to situate the importance of the Canadian transportation system for the prosperity of Canada and Canadians.
On February 25, 2016, the Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, tabled the Canada Transportation Act (CTA) Review Report in Parliament. The Review undertook a broad examination of the national transportation system and identified potential actions to enhance the system's ability to support Canada's international competitiveness, trade, and prosperity.
The Report, entitled Pathways: Connecting Canada's Transportation System to the World, represents 18 months of analysis including: over 340 stakeholder consultations across Canada and international travel to research and analyze models and best practices; over 200 stakeholder submissions; and over 30 Review Secretariat commissioned studies.
The Report, in its entirety, is now available on Transport Canada's website at: www.tc.gc.ca/ctareview2014. Abstracts of the studies commissioned by the Secretariat are also available through this link. The Report makes a number of critical observations; chief among them is the critical role that transportation plays in a high-performing economy. Ultimately, the Minister views the Report as an important contribution to the advancement of a more well-defined and ambitious vision for transportation in Canada. A detailed assessment of the Report's findings and recommendations is ongoing.
Collaboration with key partners, including provincial and territorial governments and the private sector, is essential to ensure Canada's transportation system is positioned to capitalize on global opportunities, contribute to a high-performing economy, and meet the evolving needs of Canadians. At our recent Council meeting on January 27, 2016, the Minister had the opportunity to hear about current provincial and territorial transportation priorities. Those issues will be considered as the Government shapes its long-term transportation system agenda.
HAC's Spring Reception will take place at the Place D'Darmes Hotel at 55, Saint-Jacques West Montreal from 5-7 pm on April 20 in Old Montreal. Please RSVP to email@example.com. Details relating to the Room Block rate will be available in a Bulletin, shortly.
The Helicopter Association of Canada and the Canadian Council for Aviation & Aerospace are pleased to offer a one-day Company Aviation Safety Officer (CASO) Workshop. Participants will benefit from a comprehensive overview of the role and responsibilities of the Safety Management Officer while also providing a thorough understanding of how to manage the various aspects of a Safety Management System. Register now to attend!
The Association has been receiving a flurry of calls – both from operators and hospitals – about helicopter access to H1 Helipads. Apparently, Transport Canada has been providing instructions to helicopter operators that under no circumstances shall a Single-Engine Helicopter or Class II Multi-Engine helicopter approach to land at an H1 Helipad – even for the purposes of saving human life. Strictly applied, this would mean that a patient with life-threatening injuries would need to be transferred to an airport by helicopter, before being brought to a hospital via land ambulance. HAC has questioned this interpretation. This could present a potentially life-threatening delay that could be avoided by allowing the helicopter to deliver the patient directly to the hospital, with very little risk. What's more, most of the helicopters that are currently certified for operations in to H1 helipads, are not widely available in many areas of Canada, and many of them are not capable of landing at accident scenes in the bush or on a mountainside where ad hoc emergency evacuation is often required.
The HEC Harness Working group meeting, tentatively scheduled to take place in early March has been postponed by Transport Canada until Mid-March. HAC expects to be able to release the DRAFT Global Exemption prior to the meeting to be able to provide interested parties with an opportunity to review the document and provide their initial comments at the meeting.
The Helicopter Association of Canada and the Canadian Council for Aviation & Aerospace are pleased to offer a one-day Company Aviation Safety Officer Workshop.
Participants will benefit from a comprehensive overview of the role and responsibilities of the Safety Management Officer while also providing a thorough understanding of how to manage the various aspects of a Safety Management System.
Register now to attend.
April 20, 2016
Montreal, Quebec [Venue TBC]
All Registrants are also welcome to attend the HAC Spring Reception on the same day in the evening — in the same hotel TBC.
Be Careful What You Ask For...
I can't claim to know everything about our business, so when I become involved in a new area, I generally make-the-rounds on the phone, and talk to Members and Associates to orient myself to the new subject matter. Its my way of trying to determine "where the land mines are located." Occasionally, I still get burned when they go off. About a week ago, when HAC went out with a Bulletin on the subject of HEC Harnesses (see below), and I contacted eight or ten HEC Operators and harness manufacturers, I had to don my NOMEX business suit. Many others left messages on my voicemail, or sent me emails.
Some Operators wanted access to harnesses that were Airworthiness Approved, but available at a reasonable price. OEMs wanted relief from some of the most unreasonable and burdensome elements in the current TSO Standard, but at the same time felt as if their investment in the current standard might be wasted if the proverbial bar was lowered too far. Manufacturers raised concerns over regional differences in the Airworthiness Approval process for harnesses. Some individuals questioned the need for any Airworthiness approval, at all.
For those that I DID speak with, thank you for your comments. For those that I didn't speak with, thank you for your voicemails and emails. Without your input, I can't possibly provide any advice to Transport Canada on the way forward. In this case, there are so many conflicting points of view, that HAC has prevailed upon Transport Canada to include all Interested Parties in a discussion of this subject, including the members of the HAC Class D Sub-Committee.
Please keep an eye on the Newsletter for more information. Transport Canada has committed to form a Working Group to receive feedback from HEC Operators, users, and OEMs. We expect that the consultation process will spin-up in early March. If you have any questions between now and then, please contact me anytime, on my cell at 613-884-1422 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HNZ and Frasca International will be displaying HNZ Topflight's new combined Airbus AS350 B2/H125 Level 7 Flight Training Device at HELI-EXPO 2016, Louisville, KY (Booth #9256).
If you are interested in booking a complimentary "test-flight," please contact Mark Olson at 780-429-6928 or by email at email@example.com.
Don't delay! Spaces are filling fast!
The FTD will move to its permanent location at the Edmonton International Airport in the Fall of 2016. It will be available, through the HNZ Topflight, to operators who are interested in utilizing this device as part of their training programs. Flight hour credits may be obtained as part of a CAA approved training program.
Please see the attached invitation. All Operators and Associates are welcome to attend. The more-the-merrier. Refreshments will be served.
Please RSVP by Feb 23, 2016 HERE..
On the Road Again…
For the better part of the last two weeks I have been on-the-road in BC, visiting with Operator-members and prospects. I met with about 14 Operators – at their hangars, but also at the Mining Roundup in Vancouver. It is always gratifying to meet with operators face-to-face, because I have found it is the best way to really appreciate industry circumstances. It will come as no surprise, that helicopter operators rarely mince words. I never once left a conversation wondering how they "really felt". I departed the province of British Columbia confident that not one of these operators missed their calling in the Diplomatic Service.
In short, our industry has some difficult times ahead. Between a flagging economy, declining commodity prices, a weak Canadian dollar, and UAVs, there are some challenges. The only bright spot in an otherwise gloomy horizon was the logging industry. While a number of operators were still optimistic, many were "battening down the hatches" for a challenging season, and a few of them commented that they had far more resumes from experienced drivers and engineers on their desks than they have had in recent years. Many commented on the consolidations that have taken place in recent history and lamented the "race to the bottom" on rates that has been taking place in many areas. They commented that customers often select an operator based on an assessment of rates-alone, with little consideration for their safety systems, or accident experience.
Having said all that, operators were still optimistic that the economy would rebound in time, and that this economic malaise would make them stronger when it was over.
HAC is exhibiting at HAI again this year! Stop by and see us at Booth #9040 – just look for the big Canadian flag!
Survival Systems Training (SSTL) has partnered with Total Response Solutions (TRS) to deliver their first International Hoist Emergency Response Training (HERT) Symposium in Dartmouth Nova Scotia on March 31st 2016.
This is an event that may be of interest to members of HAC that are engaged in using helicopter hoists to lift or rescue personnel as part of their operations. Read more
HAC Operators and Associates, please take notice that the HAC Oil & Gas Committee will be holding a WEBEX conference call on Feb 16 2016 at 1400 PST. Agenda to follow.
Details are set out below:
1. Please join the meeting, Feb 16, 2016 at 2:00 PM PST. https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/255482877
2. Use your microphone and speakers (VoIP) - a headset is recommended. Or, call in using your telephone.
Dial 1 (647) 497-9371
Access Code: 255-482-877
Audio PIN: Shown after joining the meeting
Meeting ID: 255-482-877
Members and Associates with questions, should contact the Committee's Chair Marc Shoenrank at firstname.lastname@example.org
HAC's President and CEO has been a member of the International Helicopter Safety Team's (IHST) Executive Committee for seven years and this year he will be making a presentation at the CHC S&Q Summit. This year will mark IHST's 10th anniversary. He will be discussing our safety-progress – both domestically and as part of the global helicopter community.
Mark your calendar, now! HAC's Annual Spring Reception will be held in Montreal in the evening of April 20. The Association will also be arranging for a pre-reception Professional Development course to be delivered on-site. Stay tuned for more details relating to the venue, timing, and the course. HAC would also like to invite any of its Associates that would be good enough to sponsor the reception, to contact Fred Jones at email@example.com
In a recent meeting the Board decided to hold our annual Spring Reception in Montreal in the evening of April 20, at a location, tbd. Shortly, the association will be announcing the venue and the time for the event. Also the Association will be holding a Professional Development program on the day of the reception. Stand-by for more details.
HAC and the Canadian Trade Commission are planning a networking event in Louisville KY at HELI-EXPO this year, for HAC's Operators and Associates in attendance. Details relating to the date and time of the event will be available shortly.
In response to a request from our affected operator-members through HAC, Transport Canada will be re-issuing an updated AD 2005-21-02 exemption to incorporate the latest inspection techniques. Their plans are to have the updated exemption valid for three-years, and they hope to have it renewed by Feb 4 2016, when the current exemption will expire.
There has recently been some considerable discussion between one of our Operator-Members and their Region on the subject of Air Time and Flight Time in helicopters, and how they should be recorded in the Journey Log, but also how Flight Time should be recorded in a Pilot's Personal Log Book. The issue is critically important – for the calculation of maintenance-related items, but also with respect to the recording of Revenue Time and for the purpose of calculating Flight Time Limits, and Flight Time for Licensing purposes.
We are aware that there is considerable disagreement – both between Regions and within Regions on this subject, and HAC is becoming engaged in the discussion, with a view to developing an industry position on this important subject.
Just after Christmas, HAC and its members were invited to participate with Transport Canada in a dialogue on harness requirements for human external load operations. Efforts will be made to discuss and reconcile the different types of available equipment – both certified and uncertified.
The Terms of Reference for the discussion are in the process of being drafted, and HAC's members involved in these operations (both operators and equipment suppliers) will be invited to participate. Stand-by for more…
Just prior to Christmas, 13 Aviation associations from across the country made a joint submission to the new Minister of Transport on the importance of taking control of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) issue
Interest in this issue from all segments of the aviation community has intensified in the wake of a couple of recent near-misses between recreationally operated UAVs and manned aircraft near Ottawa and Waterloo Ontario. We all know that these incidents are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg, and very soon all those new Christmas UAVs (estimated to be 1,000,000 in North America) will be taking to the air – and potentially increasing the threat to helicopter operations.
The letter follows up a series of meetings that have been taking place in Ottawa and across the country between Transport Canada and members of the aviation community.
Read the Joint Submission HERE
On Tuesday March 1 2016 at Heli-Expo, there will be public signing ceremony for the NEW International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST) Charter, where participating IHST Countries will renew their commitment to the goal of "Zero Accidents". The original Charter was signed ten years ago in 2005. HAC's President and CEO will be at the ceremony and is proud to serve on the IHST Executive Committee — the IHST's senior-most governing body.
In a letter from the IHST Co-Chairs, announcing the event Canadian operators were recognized for having experienced 18-months without a single fatal accident. [read the letter HERE]. With the exception of the last eighteen month period, Canadian helicopter operators have averaged roughly 3.5 fatal accidents per year with an average of 5.8 fatalities per year. Our Canadian helicopter accident rate has been trending steadily down in the last ten years.
Transport Canada has alerted HAC to a potential concern relating to certain R44 main rotor blades, arising as a result of an accident recently in New Zealand on February 19 2015. Transport Canada is currently discussing this issue with the FAA regarding appropriate corrective action however, in the meantime operators with affected blades are encouraged to carry out the actions in the attached Robinson Safety Alert.
Link to file
Read the submission.
Following your feedback in writing and during the technical briefing of April 11th, Transport Canada has made revisions and posted a revised Notice of Proposed Amendment on Crew Resource Management (under Activity #2014-021).
The revised document can be found in the CARAC Activity Reporting System HERE
Select "Revised Notice of Proposed Amendment – Crew Resource Management". For ease of reference, the changes from the original NPA are tracked in blue font or are underlined.
Please provide your comments on the revised NPA to firstname.lastname@example.org on or before June 1 2016 when industry comments will be consolidated and HAC will make its formal submission on the content of the proposed new regulations.
HAC's new Board of Directors met for the first time on November 15 2015, just after the Vancouver Convention wrapped-up. Among other things, they met briefly to:
1. Elect the Officers of the Board, as follows:
• Sylvain Seguin – Chair
• Brad Fandrich – Vice
• Jen Norie-Cross – Corporate Secretary
• Jacob Forman – Treasurer
2. Establish the New Committee Liaisons – as follows:
• Steven Williams - Human Resources
• Brad Fandrich - Maintenance & Manufacturing
• Maury Wood - Flight Training
• Jonathan Burke - Class D
• Jen Norie - Air Taxi
• Jacob Forman - Oil & Gas, TDG
• Shane Cyr - Safety
• Brian Clegg - IFR
• Sylvain Seguin - UFOC
Each serving Board member acts as a Committee Liaison to provide regular up-dates to the rest of the Board, with respect to their committee's issues and progress.
HAC would like to extend a big thank-you to our volunteer-students from Heli-College Canada!
Remember these faces if they come visiting to look for work!
Volunteers L-R (in front of HeliJet's S76)
Mark Green (not shown)
Matt Fargey (not shown)
Rod Wood received HAC's Honorary Life Member Award at the Vancouver Convention.
The award is made to individuals, selected by the Board who have distinguished themselves by making an outstanding contribution to the HAC.
Above, Rod Wood (centre) receiving his award, with Sylvain Seguin (HAC’s Chair) and Fred Jones. Top photo – Rod, a few years earlier with his lovely wife, Sharon.
Jim Davies and Terry Jones both received an Agar-Stringer Award at the Vancouver convention. The award is made to individuals selected by the Board, based on nominations received from members.
Pioneers in our industry who have made an outstanding contribution to the Canadian Helicopter community are eligible to receive the award.
Jim Davies depicted above – before approved cargo restraint systems became an issue….
Terry Jones depicted above.
Earlier in the Fall, HAC made a submission to Transport Canada on the subject of the operation of UAVs.
Since then, seven associations have been meeting to draft a joint submission to identify the major safety issues with respect to the operation of UAVs, for our new Minister of Transport.
There seems to be some agreement among the associations that the recreational UAV operator presents the highest level of threat to conventional manned operations, particularly in light of a couple of recent near-misses near Rockcliffe and Waterloo airports occurring during recreational UAV operations. The arrival of thousands of new UAVs under Canadian Christmas trees this year has only intensified our concerns.
The Associations have discussed a variety of concerns around the operation of these aircraft, including the need to Mark and Register them; the need to implement serious sanctions relating to their operations near aerodromes or in areas where they are likely to come in to conflict with manned aircraft; the need to explore "geo-fencing" technology; the need for education for recreational users and a requirement for commercial UAV operators to hold a permit; the need for warnings relating to unsafe operations on the boxes of UAVs sold for recreational use, to name only a few.
HAC believes that helicopter operators are among the most vulnerable to conflicts with UAVs, since we will generally operate in the same low-level airspace, and may be conducting similar types of operations in the same areas.
Your association will stay at the forefront of this issue, and will continue to keep you informed as the Department's policy takes shape.
It took us seven months to plan, and three hours to execute, but our first ever full-on Static Display came off flawlessly.
The weather didn't exactly cooperate for our arrivals and departures, but all six aircraft managed to get in and get out without incident on our primary arrival and departure days. Six aircraft on the West Terrace made for a pretty picture (see below).
The digital Orca presented a significant obstacle in the LZ, and prompted more than one observer to suggest that we should “Free Willy” in Vancouver Harbour.
HAC would like to recognize Shari Currie, Trevor Heryet, Stacey Mason, Danielle Rehm, and Rick Shobesberger of Transport Canada for their help. HAC also would like to recognize the efforts of Ken Glaze of VertiFlight International Consulting Inc., who led the Temporary Landing Permit application process, and executed the on-site coordination.
Check-out HeliJet's 76, arriving on the West Terrace!
HAC has a number of new Board Members! Your new Board of Directors is as follows – including their company affiliation, their position as an Officer of the Board (as applicable), their status on the Board, and whether they represent a Western or Eastern Operator, or an Associate:
• Sylvain Seguin, CHL, Chair (Re-Elected) – Eastern Operator
• Brad Fandrich, Valley Helicopters, Vice-Chair (Re-Elected) – Western Operator
• Jen Norie, VIH, Corporate Secretary (mid-term – not up for election) – Western Operator
• Jonathan Burke, Blackcomb Aviation, Director (Newly-Elected) – Western Operator
• Brian Clegg, Skyline Helicopters, Director (Newly-Elected) – Western Operator
• Shane Cyr, Universal Helicopters Newfoundland, Director (Newly-Elected) – Eastern Operator
• Jacob Forman, Yellowhead Helicopters, Director (mid-term – not up for election) – Western Operator
• Steven Williams, Emond Harnden LLP, Director (Re-Elected as an Associate Director by Acclamation) – Associate
• Maury Wood, Avialta, Director (Elected as an Associate Director by Acclamation) - Associate
Contact information for your new Board will be posted to the HAC web site, shortly.
Our Board is composed of nine members – two Operator-Directors from East of the Manitoba-Ontario border; two Operator-Directors from West of the Manitoba-Ontario border; three Operator-Directors can be from the East or the West; and two Associate Directors. All Board members serve two-year terms.
In 2016, the positions currently occupied by Jen Norie and Jacob Forman will be up for election.
Our exhibitors are fast…well, maybe not this fast…
Our 2015 Trade Show was our biggest and best so-far, with roughly 135 exhibitors.
The floor was often crowded during our receptions, lunches, breakfasts and coffee breaks! Thank-you to all our 2015 exhibitors, and to our 2016 Corporate Sponsors and our 2015 Convention Sponsors!
As-of the deadline for the Newsletter, we don't have exact numbers, but we do know that we had roughly 1000 delegates in attendance at this year's convention – a record for HAC.
In response to interest from members, two new committees-in-the making met for the first time in Vancouver. A New Human Resources Committee and a Transportation of Dangerous Goods Committee met to gauge the interest of members. Between now and Christmas, both groups will present Terms of Reference to the HAC Board for approval.
Please click here to read the latest Equivalency Certificate from Transport Canada Safety and Security
You may recall that that the transition from the Private Career Training Institutions Agency [of BC] — also known as PICTIA — is underway, and HAC's Flight Training Committee Chair — Lyle Watts, HAC's President & CEO, and ATAC have been engaged in discussions with the Ministry to try and ensure that the costs of the new system to BC's Flight Training Units are kept to a minimum, and that a Risk Assessment will drive the frequency and complexity of their new oversight processes.
Other issues, like the inclusion of aircraft in the "tuition" costs and accessibility to EQA have also been important issues relating to the review process and our access to foreign students. HAC will be coordinating a submission on these important issues to the Ministry of Advanced Education.
Training — to their VFR Helicopter Pilots
For years, the conventional wisdom in the helicopter industry has been NOT to provide IFR training to VFR helicopter pilots — "Because they should be avoiding IMC at all costs — particularly when they are low-and-slow. A little IFR knowledge may lead them to believe that they can proceed in IMC, when in fact their chances of landing successfully are very slim."
On Monday September 15, we are led to believe that Transport Canada will be releasing the first draft of new Flight & Duty Time Regulations for the Commercial and Business Aviation Communities. It has been almost two years since the Flight & Duty Time Working Group Report was tabled in the CARAC process, over the objections of HAC and eight other allied regional and National Associations.
With the exception of the National Airlines Council of Canada (NACC) all the national and regional associations in Canada representing the interests of Commercial and Business Aviation joined forces in opposition to the Recommendations contained in the Fatigue Risk Management Working Group Report
Read the Working Group Report
Nine Associations including the Air Transport Association of Canada (ATAC), Association québécoise du transport aérien (AQTA), Aviation Alberta (AA), British Columbia Aviation Council (BCAC), Canadian Business Aviation Association (CBAA), Manitoba Aviation Council (MAC), Northern Air Transport Association (NATA), and the Saskatchewan Aviation Council (SAC), and the Helicopter Association of Canada (HAC), joined forces to reject the Recommendations contained in the report.
Read the Dissent
The content of the draft Regulations has been a closely-held secret, but HAC and its allies will be reviewing the regulations this week, and planning our the next-steps in our advocacy efforts based on their content. Stay tuned for more.
HAC has rolled-out its most extensive Convention Sponsorship Program, ever, in preparation for this November's Convention in Montreal. Don't miss out on some extended exposure for your company! Montreal is not-to-be-missed!
Are you aware of someone who has made an exceptional contribution to our industry? They may be deserving of our AGAR-STRINGER Award. Nominations must be received by August 31 2014. Award recipients are recognized at our Annual Luncheon, scheduled to take place on November 8 in Montreal, Quebec.
The symposium is open to Hydro Agencies, Operators, Safety Advisors, Trade Associations, Hydro Procurement Officers and End Users. For additional information please contact: Nitin Sareen, Marketing Manager for Airbus Helicopters Canada at 905-994-2948 or by email at Nitin.Sareen@Airbus.com.
Do you have some crew members that have "Hands and Feet", but seem to be constantly causing friction with your customers? Do some of your pilots lack diplomacy or tact? Do ALL of your pilots lack diplomacy or tact? This year at the HAC Convention in Montreal, the association will be offering Charm School for Helicopter Pilots.
This half-day workshop will provide pilots will some of the essential interpersonal skills to tactfully manage their way through difficult real-life operational circumstances, and will include participation from customer groups who will help identify some of the most common "sore points".
We can't promise that we will take all the hard edges off, but let's think of them as works-in-progress…
Watch for the HAC web site for more Convention Program details as they become available.
Career Focus provides funding for employers and organizations to create career-related work experiences for post-secondary graduates. The program is part of the Youth Employment Strategy, a horizontal initiative involving eleven federal departments and agencies. As an industry, Canadian helicopter operators have been one of the largest users of this program in recent history.
More information can be found HERE
Fred has been traveling a bit more this Spring and Summer, for the purpose of meeting with members and prospective members. "More than 80% of the civil helicopters in Canada today are operated by HAC members, but we are pushing for the last 20%" said HAC's President & CEO. This Spring, Fred visited with five Quebec operators, nine BC operators and Associates, and most recently two weeks ago, seven Alberta operators.
Fred also commented, "The remote nature of our business makes visiting with ALL our members challenging, but it is important to visit with operators and listen to their opinions and concerns whenever possible. There is no substitute for it. Non-member operators also need to be made aware of the importance of joining. The work that HAC does benefits all Canadian operators."
The best locations are going fast! HAC's trade show floor opened for sales about six weeks ago, and the space is selling like hot-cakes. Sales were initially limited to Corporate Sponsors, then Associates and previous exhibitors, but now the floor is open for sales to others.
Check-out our convention page, here where you will find the current floor plan and occupancy as well as our Preliminary Program. You can even book space on-line. Our Vancouver Convention and Trade Show promises to be our biggest ever, and our first full Fall Show in Vancouver.
In response to demand from members, HAC has developed a Training Agreement template. The agreement, which can be tailored to suit individual company circumstances, is designed to preserve the ability of operators to deliver the best possible training to pilots (both employees and contractors), but at the same time ensuring that they receive a reasonable return on their investment in the form of service from the flight crew member. HAC's President & CEO said, "Operators frequently invest tens of thousands of dollars in flight crew training every year, without any certainty that they will recoup that investment." All HAC operator-members will be receiving a copy of the template Agreement by email. Members may also contact HAC directly to receive the document.
The newest additions to our Professional Development lineup include a PRMC Course, a CASO Course, and an Executive Briefing on Accountability and Liability aimed at helping Accountable Executives learn ways to identify, mitigate and manage their risks. Registration for our Training and Professional Development Programs will open soon. Don't wait until these programs are full….! These courses are bound to sell-out.
In response to demand from our valued Associates and Exhibitors, HAC's Vancouver 2013 trade show floor will be our largest ever, and 50% larger than our next largest show floor in Ottawa in the Spring of 2012! The floor opened for sale about four weeks ago, and it is almost 50% sold-out, already.
Check-out the floor plan!
[Apply for exhibit space on-line, now!
HAC has consistently sold-out its trade show floor EVERY year. Our unique trade show model constantly puts your operator-customers on the floor – and provide you with the maximum exposure.
With the exception of our off-site "After Hours" event, and our Opening Luncheon, all our breaks, and our Opening Reception and meal functions are all on the trade show floor. No one in the business provides you with better exposure. Our operator-members collectively account for over 80% of the Canadian civil helicopters operating in Canada today, and Vancouver is our most popular Convention venue. We are expecting over 800 delegates. If you have any questions, please contact Barb Priestley at email@example.com, today!
HAC has recently received information that some exhibitors have been approached by “Pirate” housing companies offering rooms for HAC 2013. Do not be fooled by these companies implying an affiliation to HAC, or suggesting that Vancouver hotels are already sold out. Accommodation for HAC 2013 Vancouver 18th Annual Convention & Trade Show has been amply secured. This is a scam and once you provide your credit card details to secure your rooms, you may later discover that no rooms have been reserved and that your wallet has been pillaged by the scurvy dogs.
HAC has negotiated a preferred rate at the Conference Host Hotel, Pan Pacific Vancouver, and several other desirable hotels within walking distance from the Vancouver Convention Centre have been secured at preferred rates once HAC has reached our room obligation with the Pan Pacific. HAC cannot be held responsible for rooms booked outside the HAC Block. Click Here For HAC Accommodation Details
SUPPORT YOUR CONVENTION – BOOK AT THE HOST HOTEL
Recently, HAC went out to its Operator-members to survey them on the need for HAC to develop a template Training Bond Agreement. The agreement was intended to address the scenario where a flight crew member receives flight training at considerable expense to the operator - and then leaves the employ of that operator shortly therafter. These agreements, HAC has learned, can be structured in a variety of successful… and unsuccessful ways.
Thirty operators responded – virtually all them in favour of a template document being developed by the association. Here are some of the highlights of the survey responses:
Read the complete survey results here.
The Canadian Government is currently pursuing an ambitious trade and investment agenda. In order that the Government can advocate in the best interests of the Canadian helicopter industry, they have approached HAC to survey its members on issues affecting the provision of specialty air services.
Shortly, HAC will be carrying out a survey of its members to determine their interests in providing specialty air services internationally, and to determine if our operator-members have any concerns with foreign operators providing specialty air services in Canada. HAC will be circulating the survey to Operator-Members shortly, in a Bulletin format in the coming week. Stand-by for more…
Through the generous support of GE Capital - one of HAC's Corporate Sponsors, the company will be delivering two half-day courses at the Vancouver 2013 Convention – one dealing with ways to cut-costs in your operation while continuing to deliver maximum value, and another which will help operators deal with the growing problem of succession planning. With a growing consolidation trend in our industry lately, and an aging demographic of owner-operators looking to retire and transition their operations to a family member or third-party, the course is guaranteed to be helpful to our operator-members. Watch the HAC Convention page for more information and registration forms. These courses are sure to sell out early.
To promote aviation training and the Chinese market development, the 2nd annual Aviation Training Congress China 2013 will be held October 18-20 2013 in Xi’An City of China. Approved by the Chinese government, the conference organizers are focusing the 2013 event to further discuss the ongoing aviation training market realities, opportunities, and challenges in the Chinese market. With support from the Chinese government and with more than 300+ high profile attendees and a concurrent exhibition, the 2013 event promises to be a success. For more information, please visit the convention website
November 8-10, 2013 – Vancouver Convention Centre
The Helicopter Association of Canada’s Annual Convention and Trade Show, is the only event of its kind in Canada, allowing exhibitors to reach Canadian helicopter owner/operators, OEM’s, management companies and suppliers to the Canadian helicopter industry.
We have enhanced the sponsorship program this year, with an expanded range of opportunities and prices to meet every budget and marketing strategy, offering unique and valuable benefits in every category. HAC will work with you to ensure that your sponsorship helps you to reach your target audience effectively and within your budget. Co-sponsorships are also available.
View All Details Here
On-Line Application & Conference Details
In response to increased demand from HAC's Associates, the Vancouver trade show floor has increased considerably in size, and it will be our biggest show, ever. HAC's largest show floor to-date was Ottawa in the Spring of 2012 with 120 booths. The show floor in the Vancouver Convention Centre will showcase over 180 booths. HAC's President & CEO said, "Our valued Associates and exhibitors are taking the HAC trade show to new heights. Our floor has tripled in size since 2009."
Have a special marketing based message to deliver or a demo that exceeds your booth capabilities? Consider booking a time slot in our briefing room.
Time slots will be confirmed on a first come basis pending approval of suitable session outline
HAC is pleased to announce that System Safety Services will be delivering a one-day PDM course on November 7, just prior to the HAC Convention in Vancouver. Interested in attending? For course details and registration, watch the HAC Convention page.
HAC is pleased to announce that Vic Bailey of Enviroblast will be delivering an initial Bell Ultrasound Grip Inspection course on November 6-7 2013, just prior to the HAC Convention. The second day of the course will also be available as a refresher for anyone that has already taken the initial course. The courses will be offered at a cost of $300/day and registration will soon be open through the HAC Convention page.
By popular demand, Bob Fearst of Utilities Aviation Specialists will be delivering Parts I and II in Vancouver on November 6 and 7. The courses sold-out to standing-room-only attendance in Calgary, so HAC will be increasing the room size to accommodate the overwhelming demand for Bob's courses from our operator-members.
In response to interest from members in the subject, the law firm of Rohmer & Fenn will be briefing members on the use of Training Bonds at the Vancouver Convention. Preliminary results of HAC's survey on this subject (to be released in the next Communique) indicate that HAC should be producing a template agreement on this subject. In the same session, Rohmer & Fenn will also be briefing on "What to Do When Enforcement Comes Knocking" and will brief on the process to hold a Hearing before the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada.
A number of operator-members have recently called HAC to raise concerns over employees and contract-pilots that receive costly training paid for by the employer – and then leave the employ of the Operator to find work elsewhere shortly after training has been completed. HAC is considering developing a template Training Bond Agreement that would notionally be signed by the Operator and the Pilot, pre-hire. We need to know if our Operator-members are interested. Please take a few minutes on or before May 21 to complete our short survey at the link below.
Click here for survey
In an attempt to ensure that all HAC Operator and Associate plaques are right up to date and proudly displayed, please let us know if your plaque is missing decals – we’d be happy to get them out in the mail to you.
Email: barb.priestley or call (613) 231-1110 ext 237.
HAC is teeing-up a one-day session on November 7 2013 in Vancouver to help participating operators implement the new Template HAC Policy Manual for Helicopter Operators. Use of the manual by operators will help establish a new due diligence standard in our industry, and help operators move from one-of decision making with respect to individual employees, to a policy-based framework that will provide more predictability for everyone on a broad range of issues from probation periods to the pre-hire falsification of personal log books.
HAC has enlisted the support of Emond Harnden, a firm specializing in Labour Law, and an HR industry-specialist to help participating operators choose the parts of the manual that are appropriate to their operations, but also to answer questions relating to HR issues arising in the context of your operation.
HAC is pleased to announce that System Safety Services will be delivering a one-day Helicopter Maintenance Advanced Human Factors Course in Vancouver on November 7. A number of operators approached HAC about asking Gord to deliver his Human Factors course at HAC in 2013. Course participants will receive a certificate of completion, and the course can be used for the purpose of satisfying Transport CAnada's recurrent training requirement.
For more details, please keep an eye on the HAC website Convention Page.
A number of members have contacted HAC to alert us to a hotel booking scam that is occurring currently. A number of our members have been contacted by a company about hotel arrangements for the upcoming HAC 2013 Convention in Vancouver.
Each year at HAC - and particularly in the Spring, HAC receives a flurry of calls from Operator-members who have invested a considerable amount of time and money training pilots (contract pilots and employees) for the season, who then depart the company to work for the competition – sometimes within a few days and for just a few dollars more.
The cost to the operator of this wasted training is significant, particularly where type endorsements on mediums and in IFR operations or where other costly training is concerned. Frequently the pilot is paid a substantial daily rate during training and there are travel, meals and accommodation expenses too, which only serve to aggravate the situation.
The concept of a "Training Bond" would ensure that the operator receives a return on their investment in new-hire training, with a declining obligation on the part of the pilot to repay the cost of training until a reasonable term of employment or contract employment has been completed. Stand–by for a survey of members on this subject from HAC. If you have any strong views on this issue, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You will recall that recently HAC conducted a survey of Operators and Associates with respect to their interest in a Group Benefits Plan. A summary of the survey results is available on the HAC website. Based on the significant interest from members on this subject, HAC just released an RFP for the prospective program to the Broker community. The opportunity to submit an RFP is open to HAC Associates and Non-Associates however, HAC has an "Associates-first" policy.
Read the RFP here
You may recall at our November Convention last year that HAC embarked on the development of a Policy Manual template document. The document was being developed with the assistance of CPM Manuals, and is intended to provide a framework for operators to establish company policy on a broad range of issues including probationary periods, background checks, the consequences of falsifying log books as the basis for a hiring decision, disciplinary action, bereavement leave, and jury duty, to name only a very few.
The template document, developed with the assistance of a number of operator members will be completely customizable by individual members, and will be available in WORD format. HAC will be holding a one-day session at its Vancouver Convention to assist operator-members to implement the document in their operations, to help them decide which elements of the document are best-suited to them. The Manual should be available through CPM Manuals in the next four weeks.
In their meeting of March 27, the Board discussed the following issues:
The status of the HAC Template Policy Document Project
The status of the Labour Canada - Hours of Work Project (see the article on the HAC site)
The form and content for the new Newsletter format with Vertical Magazine
The status of the prospective HAC Group Health Plan Project
The status of HAC's Operator-recruitment drive in BC and recent visits with BC-based members and Associates
The status of HAC's efforts to orchestrate static display aircraft on the floor in Vancouver of 2013
The Terms of Reference for a Governance Committee of the Board to review prospective changes to HAC's By-Laws and Letters Patent, scheduled for presentation and discussion at the November 2013 AGM in Vancouver
In response to questions from members, the Board reviewed a draft article for the Newsletter and website to clarify HAC's Policy on the use of helmets for flight crews at it relates to exceptions to its strong recommendation for their use "when operation circumstances permit" (see the article on the HAC site)
Recent use by Transport Canada of the "continuing offence provisions" whereby Transport Canada can enforce against an operator for multiple flights following-on a single act or omission on the part of the AOC holder
A review of the February 2013 HAC Monthly Financial Statements and a report from the Audit & Finance Committee of the Board
A review of the first DRAFT Program for the Vancouver 2013 Convention and a discussion of the After-Hours Event Concept under consideration
Consideration for the prospective dates for the 2014 Convention in Montreal
Board Committee Liaisons provided up-dates on the activity of their committee
For the third time in the last four years, HAC's Board has undertaken a review of its By-Laws. The new Canadian Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (CNFPCA) is calling for a variety of mandatory revisions to our By-Laws, but the HAC Board has taken the opportunity to discuss a list of other issues that have arisen over the last couple of years – as part of a Corporate Housekeeping process.
Some of the issues under discussion include Term Limits for Board Members; the process of engaging with Associates to identify Associate Board members; a review of our Letters Patent to bring them up-to-date if necessary; Director's term-lengths; Qualifications of Board members; a review of the different types of Operator-members and Associates vis-a-vis their rights and obligations in HAC and eligibility for Board service; a review of Associate Board member term limits; the status of the President & CEO as a member of the Board in light of the new CNFPCA requirements; proxy voting in the electronic-age, to name only a few.
Roughly 70 Members and Associates turned-out for HAC's first Spring-format reception in Old Montreal on March 27, graciously sponsored by AgustaWestland. The HAC Board met on March 27 all-day, to discuss association business.
The reception coincided with two one-day courses sponsored by GE Capital and the Canadian Council for Aviation and Aerospace (CCAA). Both courses were well-received and HAC would like to thank GE and CCAA for their support. We would also like to thank HELICOPTERS Magazine for sponsoring the coffee breaks. Last, but certainly not-least, HAC would like to thank Bell Helicopters for sponsoring a tour of their Mirabel facilities for about 45 people in the morning of March 28th, although some members of the tour required the "tinted" safety glasses. Bell was good enough to provide the tour and the bus transportation for the event. Operators and Associates had some very complementary remarks about the tour, the courses, and the reception.
In response to a recommendation from the HAC Safety Committee passed at the HAC Convention in the Spring of 2011, the HAC Board approved a resolution on the use of helmets by helicopter flight crews.
The issue was brought sharply in to focus when the Transportation Safety Board issued a Safety Advisory in the Fall of 2009. The Advisory encouraged HAC to develop an advocacy program aimed at increasing the use of helmets by helicopter flight crews. The Advisory cited a number of helicopter accidents where injuries to the flight crew were reduced, or could have been reduced through the use of a helmet.
For those of you that have some doubts that our industry is recovering, HAC recently obtained the total hours for Canadian Civil Registered Helicopters by-Year. The bad news is, we haven't reached the 2007-peak, yet….
The data was obtained through Transport Canada and was collected using information provided by Canadian operators in the Annual Airworthiness Information Reporting (AAIR) system.
Read the survey results and an Executive Summary
HAC would like to recognize the outstanding work of our Air Taxi, Utility Flight Operations and Oil & Gas Committee members. Fred Jones, HAC's President & CEO commented "These new Best Practice documents represent the culmination of years of hard work by these HAC committees. To their credit, these Best Practices will help "
These documents represent the collaborative efforts of HAC operators and their major customers. HAC operators have been driving this process for years in an effort to articulate the for prudent operators in our industry.
Pilot Competencies for Helicopter Wildfire Operations Amendment 1
Helicopter Guidelines for Canadian Onshore Seismic Operations
Utility Flight Operations Best Practices and Safety Guide for Helicopter Operations
HAC's Air Taxi Committee recently overhauled two of HAC's most long-standing Best Practices, and released them for comment on the HAC website. The committee recently published the DRAFT Heli-Ski Training Best Practices [read the document] and DRAFT Mountain Flying Best Practice [read the document]. Members and others with comments on these new documents are encouraged to contact the Chair of the Air Taxi Committee, Jen Norie.
On November 5 2012 in Calgary, Jen Norie of VIH was re-elected to the HAC Board by acclamation. Only one Board position was up for re-election in Calgary. Congratulations, Jen!
There were also some changes to the Officers of the HAC Board. Teri Northcott stepped-down as the Chair of the HAC Board after two and a half years. HAC would like to thank Teri and recognize her for her service to HAC and the industry. We are certainly pleased that Teri will be remaining on the Board as the Immediate Past Chair for another two-year term.
As-of November 5 2012 Sylvain Seguin of CHL assumed the position of Chair of the HAC Board and Brad Fandrich of Valley Helicopters has assumed the role of Vice-Chair. Welcome gentlemen, to your new positions!
Gary McDermid of Helifor will remain as the HAC Treasurer, and Jen Norie of VIH will remain as HAC's Corporate Secretary. Thank-you both.
A complete listing of HAC Board members can be found here.
In the interests of transparency in governance, and to ensure that our members are kept informed of the activities of the Board in a timely way, the Board has recently adopted the policy of posting a summary of its meetings to the HAC website. [Read the summary.]
Notwithstanding that it was our second Convention in 2012, HAC's Calgary Convention during the period November 4-5 2012 drew over 400 delegates. The trade show floor sold-out over six weeks in advance of the meeting, and the courses were full-to-overflowing. The Calgary Convention was a promising start to our new Fall format. In 2013 our Convention and AGM will take place during the period November 7-10 at the Pan Pacific Hotel and the Vancouver Convention Centre.
Some of the highlights were the session with Martin Eley and HAC's President, Fred Jones, and the "Advancing Helicopter Safety in Canada" presentation by Wendy Tadros, the Chair of the TSB.
The "After-Hours" event at the Palomino was jammed to the rafters and should have been called the "Wee Hours" event. The evening culminated with Karoke by Corey Taylor, followed shortly thereafter by breakfast on the trade show floor.
HAC rolled-out two new projects in Calgary – one being delivered with CPM Manuals that will provide Operators and Associates with a Policy Manual template to assist them to implement company policies for Jury Duty, Bereavement Leave, use of company vehicles, and a broad range of other subjects. The second project will see HAC engage in a dialogue with Labour Canada to develop Employment Templates and guidance to help members better structure their employment relationships with pilots and engineers to avoid criticism from Labour Canada.
On January 28, HAC delivered a second written submission to the the Minister of Transport Chuck Strahl, and requested a meeting to discuss the issue face-to-face. The Association continues to receive calls and emails from members who want to see the Canadian Ownership status of Alpine Helicopters resolved without delay.
The January 28 letter is the fifth in a series of letters delivered to Transport Canada on this subject since the Fall of 2010, and the second letter to the Minister. The issue continues to go unresolved in the face of growing frustration from a broad spectrum of aviation stakeholders.
On December 22, HAC made a written submission directly to the Minister of Transport on the reassessment of Alpine’s exemption to the Canadian ownership requirements. This is the fourth submission by HAC on the subject in response to a groundswell of opposition from members to any extension or re-issuance of the exemption.
In response to a request for support, four other Associations have contacted the Minister’s office to lend their support to HAC’s Position on the reassessment of Alpine’s Exemption. NATA, AQTA, ATAC, MAC and SAC all wholeheartedly supported the HAC position in separate letters to the Minister on this subject. See above links for individual letters.
HAC would like to congratulate Jan on receiving this prestigious award from the Air Force Association for his years of dedicated service at CHL's Flight School in Penticton. Jan is seen here with his son Ryan Rustad, and Lt Col Dennis Levesque who presented the award in October of 2010 at the Canadian Air Force Association’s annual banquet in Courtney BC.
HAC’s members have been identifying a growing list of issues which relate to the inconsistent interpretation of Regulations across Regions. These issues cause considerable angst among affected operators and consume a considerable amount of HAC’s time to try and unravel. The problems stem from the lack of any reporting relationship on regulatory interpretation issues between the Regions and Transport Canada HQ in an area of jurisdiction which is clearly Federal.
In a recent meeting with Transport Canada’s Director General Civil Aviation, Martin Eley, he suggested that HAC and its members should bring those issues to the attention of Transport Canada through Transport Canada’s Director, Standards Don Sherritt, and a committee of Transport Canada Regional Directors tasked with resolving these issues. Members are asked to identify those issue to HAC’s President & CEO, who will then raise them and track Transport Canada’s progress on these issues. Members may also want to contact Transport Canada’s Director, Standards Don Sherritt directly at email@example.com.
The Watch List so-far includes:
Members with other issues should contact HAC’s President & CEO at firstname.lastname@example.org
Peter Murray of Talon Helicopters was recently recognized for 20 years of service rescuing stranded hikers and skiers in BC. HAC would like to congratulate Peter on the award and for helping establish a positive image for the helicopter industry in Canada.
In an effort to assist the future pilots and engineers that will be the backbone of our industry in the years-to-come, HAC and Vertical Magazine are extending special convention registration rates to Student Helicopter Pilots and Student Engineers/Apprentices.
On March 25th, Vertical Magazine is sponsoring a complimentary one-day registration to the first 80 helicopter Student Pilots and Student Engineers and Apprentices that register on-site (normally $299 for individual non-HAC members). For other students on March 25, HAC will extend a $50 One-Day on-site registration.
For students wishing to attend HAC on March 26, HAC is extending a One-Day Registration of $75.00 (Luncheon not included). All students accessing these special rates will require Student Identification or a School Letter.
Seven available places on HAC’s One-Day Mountain Flying Ground School Course being put on by CHL on March 28 are being offered at a cost of $100 each. The course already offered at a discount to HAC members at a cost of $400 is normally offered by CHL at a cost of $700 per student. The student discounts are being offered on a lottery basis to any student pilots that register for the HAC Convention on March 25. A draw will be held at the close of registration at the end of the day.
In the Fall of last year Transport Canada convened a Working Group to examine the existing prescriptive Flight and Duty Time Limitations with a view to determining if and how they should be revised. The group has met four times and has been considering a variety of factors including the latest scientific research on fatigue; the possible use or integration of Fatigue Risk Management System principles; and the evolution of fatigue management regulations in other jurisdictions and in the international community.
Based on a 2007 Working Group report generated by the UAV community Transport Canada has established a number of Working Groups tasked with integrating UAV operations into existing airspace, and in to the operational community. UAVs will eat your lunch.
In the Spring of this year, Transport Canada proposed new regulations (CAR 607) which created a State Operators section in the CARs were tabled in the CARAC process. About two days earlier, the Minister made an announcement that he would be repatriating oversight of the business aviation community and the POC program back to Transport Canada. Following on some discussion with industry as part of the CARAC process, the new regulations were withdrawn, for now.
The new “Transitional Exemption” to allow a two-year PPC is now available from Transport Canada, here. The exemption will run for one more year, until June 15 2011.
Transport Canada recently announced that SMS for smaller operators has been delayed again. The Department is currently targeting a new start date for the phased implementation early in 2012.
HAC and other National aviation associations will be meeting the ICAO's 16 member Air Navigation Commissioners (ANC) on Friday, June 28th .The commissioners wish to have an open dialogue around a meeting table on issues and irritants related to ICAO and its requirements/documentation, or lack thereof. Under discussion will be, SMS Implementation, Fatigue Risk Management/Flight & Duty Times, and International Recognition of Pilot Training and Licensing, and Helicopter Performance Regulations, to name a few.
The HSG (Helicopter Sub-Group) of the ICAO operations sub-panel is a new standing helicopter subgroup within the Ops group that has been established to address helicopter-specific issues at ICAO – a Canadian - Bob Toews is the group's Rapporteur. Bob was sponsored to the position with the International Federation of Helicopter Associations (IFHA) by HAC. HAC will be encouraging the ANC to ensure that any proposals for change developed by ICAO (and developed principally for the airline community) should be reviewed by the HSG early to ensure that the Canadian helicopter communities interests are addressed in a sensitive and timely way.
HAC is participating in the CARAC Modernization Project, aimed at brining the aging CARAC process up-to-date. Part of that process is to address a significant bottleneck in the system whereby the process was permitted to generate over 900 Notices of Proposed Amendment (NPA's) - a number that is well beyond Transport Canada's ability to process through the Canada Gazette and in to law, in a timely way. Even once they have been processed through the CARAC process, only a small handful of amendments can be Gazetted each year and brought in to force. We are working with Transport to triage these NPAs to identify the ones that should be given priority, and those that have been simply rendered obsolete since they were consulted-on – some up to ten years old.
UAVs are becoming increasingly popular in Canada - and not just with the police and military. They are becoming popular for a broad spectrum of other applications in private and commercial operations. They are here to stay – and we are sharing low level airspace with them. Transport Canada is in the process of drafting a new regulatory structure to accommodate their use for commercial operations, including utilities operations, surveillance, pipeline and power line patrol, and external load operations, to name only a few. Don't miss this session at HAC 2013 in Vancouver!
The practice in some regions recently has been to simply "accept" or "reject" applications for low flying permits. Even where the application accompanies a credible Risk Assessment conducted by the Air Operator, if Transport Canada rejects the application, they may not even include written reasons why it was rejected. It may simply be, "No".
To make matters worse, sometimes it can take months to process an application. The operator, who may already be working close-in to a contract start date, may not have any understanding of where they went wrong, or what parts of the application were unacceptable. HAC has maintained that applications to operate a low altitude over a built up area should be evaluated on a segment-by-segment basis, using risk assessment principles. HAC's President has said, "It may be, that the risks associated with the operation of the aircraft over one segment are low, or can be effectively mitigated, while the risk of operations over another segment can only be mitigated by flight at a higher altitude, or by avoiding that area altogether. The operator is entitled to know one way or another on a segment-by-segment basis."
What's more, operators should clearly understand how the risk is being evaluated by Transport CAnada's regional offices using National standards. It provides them with some predictability in the process, and helps them advise and prepare their customers for a probable outcome. "If sound risk assessment principles are applied, then Transport Canada and the operator may even both agree on the required mitigation and outcome of the application process.
Transparency and predictability in the evaluation process on a National level are essential elements in any rational evaluation process applied in an area of federal jurisdiction – particularly one that claims to rely on SMS principles.", HAC's President said. "Today, the same application in one region may fail while it passes without question in another region. This is simply unacceptable in an area of federal regulatory jurisdiction, and particularly in an industry where operators may operate in multiple regions."
HAC will continue to keeps its members advised as the consultation process on this important subject unfolds.
HAC has received a number of calls from members recently about the process being used by Transport Canada to evaluate Low Flying Permit applications. It is HAC's view that these permits should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, but using the backdrop of consistent National policy. If Transport Canada really believes in SMS, and they are inviting operators to manage their own risks through the application of a risk assessment process, then they should be prepared to give serious consideration to them, and they should be engaging in a meaningful way with the operator to mitigate risk. If there are certain areas of the proposed route where there are no suitable emergency landing areas for a single-engine aircraft for example, then perhaps in a worst-case scenario, that specific part of the route should be avoided or traversed at a higher altitude, but the denial of a permit for an entire route because the risk in one area cannot be adequately mitigated at low altitude, is simply unacceptable.
[Read an excerpt from HAC's correspondence with Transport Canada on this subject]
The Canadian Aviation Regulatory Committee (CARC) will be considering the Report of the Fatigue Risk Management Working Group and all of the dissents thereto, in May. HAC will be meeting with Transport Canada's Director General and other senior Public Servants and politicians to emphasis the importance of this issue to the Canadian helicopter community.
The report, if implemented in its current form, HAC believes would have absolutely no effect on safety, but it would cripple our industry. HAC has maintained that this is the single most important issue facing the helicopter community in Canada, and we may be calling upon members to engage with their local Members of Parliament and the Minister of Transport to oppose the recommendations contained in the report if Transport Canada continues to move forward with the changes called for in the Working Group report.
HAC will continue to vocally articulate the opposition of our members to the recommendations in the report to all levels of government, and to work with other like-minded aviation Associations to oppose the recommendations, which are more suited to the CAR 705 Fixed-wing airline community and their unions.
HAC and the Air Transport Association of Canada (ATAC) recently made a joint submission to Citizenship & Immigration Canada in response to new draft regulations recently published in Gazette I. If the new regulations were to come in to force in their current form, only flight training taking place at Publicly-funded or a Provincially-designated (by the Private Career Training Institutions Agency (PCTIA) in BC, for example) Flight Training institutions. HAC's President said, "Training foreign students is a lucrative and growing source of revenue for Canadian Flight Training operators, and one that would dry up for many FTUs on January 1 2014 if the proposed new regulations were to come in to force. Canadian helicopter flight training and licensing standards are recognized and respected around the world."
In response to an invitation from Minister of State for Transport, Stephen Fletcher, HAC invited its members to comment on regulations “that may be out of date, unnecessarily burdensome, or simply no longer needed” and to comment on “specific irritants and issues”.
They were also invited to comment on “regulations that require strengthening or realignment to accomplish their policy goals.” HAC recently consolidated your responses in an association submission to Minister Fletcher
Read the letter
On January 30 2013, at HAC's request [read our letter], Transport Canada delivered a letter to the association [read the response from Transport Canada] indicating that the current exemption will be extended while a Risk Assessment is conducted. The letter received from Transport Canada will serve to extend the current exemption which expires on January 31 2013, until the new one is issued.
Our latest information is that the new exemption will likely be issued for a new term of three years to allow the Risk Assesment to be conducted.
For any other information, please contact email@example.com.
In a decision dated January 18 2013, the CTA issued a Domestic Licence to Alpine Helicopters. The decision is the final phase in a lengthy process leading up to the company's restructuring.
You will recall, in the Fall of 2012, the CTA approached HAC to obtain our views on the definition of "publicly available". You will recall that the CTA had circulated a DRAFT Interpretation Note on this subject, and HAC invited its members to comment. A copy of our final submission can be accessed Here . HAC would like to thank the members that took the time to send their comments to the association on this important issue.
The issue is important because the "publicly available" definition will help the CTA determine which operations will require a Commercial AOC, and which operations will be able to conduct passenger-carrying operations without it.
HAC has been receiving a number of calls recently from Canadian Operators interested in operating in the USA under NAFTA's Specialty Air Service provisions. Set out below are a few helpful links to get Canadian operators started:
Advisory Circular 00-60A
Ops Spec 56
For North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Policy and Procedures, Authorization and Registrations, contact: