And with high demand for helicopter services, mostly related to governmental Covid-19 operations, priority for highest quality MRO services was formed. However, in order to fulfil such demand, helicopters MRO services providers had to implement changes in their usual activities and offer flexible solutions.
Governmental helicopter operators with high growth momentum are continuously increasing their internal maintenance capabilities level and seeking for independence from external factors. For such operators, possibility of helicopter overhaul at their location becomes very attractive, as they can monitor and even participate in the overhauling activities of their own helicopters. During the Covid-19 crisis, the possibility of carrying out helicopter overhaul at customer’s base became even more attractive.
“Even before the pandemic, operators were highly interested in overhaul of helicopters at their bases. But now, pandemic brought additional issues, such as logistics and travel burden and related increased costs,” explained Gintaras Juknevicius, CEO of Helisota, Helicopter MRO provider. “Clients from all over the world turn to the companies that can provide overhaul services at their sites and do not require helicopter transportation to the MRO provider’s facility abroad. Only by observing the global situation and understanding clients’ needs, it is possible to offer solutions that they actually need.”
Health safety was another issue that Covid-19 brought to the frontline in all fields, helicopter operations included. Emergencies and patient transportation missions are usual field of helicopters operations, however for covid-19 related missions additional safety equipment had to be adapted and installed in helicopters to ensure secure conditions patients as well as pilots and crewmembers.
Due to combination of reasons, such as adaptability, unmatched operational flexibility and reliability, Mi series helicopters are most commonly used for operations with mission specific equipment including covid-19 related missions. Aside from regular safety measures, helicopters designated for covid-19 patient transportation missions were upgraded and fitted with solid plastic chambers with integrated beds, air ventilation devices and cabin-cockpit separation partition walls to protect pilots and personnel from infection.