COATESVILLE, Pa., Oct. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. has delivered the first two S-92® baseline helicopters to Bond Aviation Group, the first of 16 to be delivered under the largest one-time acquisition of S-92 aircraft ever received by Sikorsky, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).
Bond Aviation Group, a subsidiary company of the World Helicopter Group, a global leader in providing mission-critical services through a fleet of more than 350 helicopters, signed the contract with Sikorsky earlier this year. Sikorsky will customize the helicopters for offshore oil operations.
"Our Group is committed to safety as the utmost priority for our customers, and the S-92 helicopter represents the latest technology in terms of design and safety," said Richard Mintern, Chief Executive Officer of Bond Aviation Group. "This, combined with its payload, speed and range capabilities, makes the S-92 an ideal choice for the oil & gas and search & rescue missions, and thus an excellent choice for Bond and for our customers. I am also very proud to announce that these first two aircraft will be operated by our new business in Norway, Norsk Helikopter Service."
Ed Beyer, Vice President of Sikorsky Global Helicopters, said: "Bond Aviation Group is a premier helicopter services provider and Sikorsky is proud to see the S-92 helicopter join the Bond Aviation fleet on the merits of its performance as a safe, robust and reliable aircraft. The S-92 helicopter is enjoying a healthy backlog well into 2016, as operators of offshore oil operations continue to rely on its proven platform. The aircraft also is seeing significant opportunities in the search & rescue and utility missions."
The S-92 helicopter is one of the largest in its heavy offshore class. Its cabin can easily carry 19 passengers and their luggage. Since entering service in September 2004, the S-92 fleet has grown to more than 150 aircraft. Helicopter transport companies serving the offshore oil and gas industry operate approximately 66 percent of the fleet, and currently account for 90 percent of the fleet's total flight hours, which are on a pace to reach 500,000 hours in early 2013.
All World Helicopter S-92 aircraft will feature equipment and systems necessary for operations in the North Sea in accordance with the European Aviation Safety Agency's requirements. These include five flotation devices, two auto-deployable life rafts, satellite flight following communications, and a main rotor blade ice protection system. Currently, helicopter operators based in five North Sea countries are flying 49 S-92 aircraft configured for offshore transport and search and rescue missions.
Bond Aviation Group and Norsk Helikopter Service are part the World Helicopter Group, the largest global independent emergency and mission critical helicopter operator providing air ambulance helicopter services, police and marine support to offshore wind farms and lighthouses as well as mission critical Oil & Gas crew change and search and rescue services in the North Sea to blue chip oil companies.
Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture, and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.
SOURCE Sikorsky Aircraft Corp.