Helicopter crew training in British Columbia

We posted the Tweet below, because the activity in the photo with the helicopter not is something we have previously seen.

3 thoughts on “Helicopter crew training in British Columbia”

  1. The top left picture is of Initial Attack crews doing their annual re-currency for Hover Exit training. All IA crews in BC are trained and recertified every spring on Hover Exit. They use it to access remote fires where a flat landing or road isn’t always available.

  2. The top-left photo that you referring to is a common practice for the BCWS (and almost all other wildfire agencies across Canada) called a “hover exit”. The name pretty much sums it up- used when no other practical option exists, crews will configure the machine for deplaning while in a hover. They will then have their gear slung into them, improve the pad for a skids-down landing and action the fire. Staff receive training in this maneuver and re-certify annually, although they may only perform the operation a handful of times a season where fire activity dictates rapid action vs. the safer option of finding a more distant LZ and hiking in a few km’s. BC and AB also have rappel programs for targets with no reasonable hover exit site.

    Speaking to the photo itself- this is an “inside the skid” exit, where the crew-member is closer to the ship’s COG. This requires some finesse, particularly if there’s a mid-skid step as you see here. More commonly performed is the “outside the skid” exit as you tend to get a couple of 20-30cms of height. Crews train with both methods so as to be able to work effectively with whatever machine is assigned to them.

  3. We are sticklers for safety and have extensive experience in remote worksite operations. We are not your grandfather’s incident management crew. We use helicopters and heavy machinery and partner with sophisticated organizations.

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