First HNZ AW109 GrandNew in Australia
HNZ Group, January 15, 2013 - Perth-based HNZ has taken delivery of the first of three brand new AW109SP's. The aircraft is being readied for marine pilot transfer operations at Karratha in the north-west of Western Australia as part of a contract with Rio Tinto.
The first of three brand new AW109SP’s direct from their Italian factory is airborne at Jandakot WA in final preparation for its end user delivery flight to the remote north-west. The state-of-the-art helicopter is expected to make its way north in late January. Ship number one of three, arrived by sea at Fremantle and was delivered by road to Jandakot Airport for re-assembly. There it underwent extensive modifications to meet the very demanding standards lifting it to the absolute benchmark in MPT operations.
HNZ have purchased three of these most technologically advanced civil helicopters in the country for a ten year extension to a Marine Pilot Transfer (MPT) contract based out of Karratha. Ships numbers two and three will soon be following, with all three expected to be in service by the middle of 2013.
“At almost $7 million per machine, this commitment by HNZ speaks volumes about our commitment to safety and the benefits of new-technology aircraft,” HNZ spokesman Brenton Davis said. “Blue chip clients are always looking for ways to improve safety for their people and cost effectiveness for their operation. These new helicopters will take our 20 plus years of MPT experience and raise the bar on standards yet again, making us the industry leader in this field here in Australia.”
HNZ’s new AW109’s feature twin-engine safety and reliability, coupled to a full “glass-cockpit” embracing the very latest in avionics technology. Certified to fly in any weather day or night by a single pilot if required, the helicopters will be crewed by two pilots to enhance safety standards even further. The pilots will enjoy such luxuries as “auto-hover” and “highway in the sky” navigation as part of the four-axis auto-pilot regarded as the finest available.
The helicopters will gradually replace the fleet of three EC145 helicopters conducting 24 hour-a-day operations to the shipping fleet out of the north-west. HNZ have been based at Perth Airport for over 25 years and operate helicopters right around the country, in a range of niche utility operations.
AgustaWestland AW109SP GrandNew VH-NZU ( HNZ Australia Pty Ltd )