Posted by: sHeli-Port™ Insights | February 4, 2012

Helicopter damage: I swear I didn’t do it, but it gave me an idea

Four years ago when I was still in flight training, I arrived at the airport for my 0800 helicopter lesson only to discover two of the school’s helicopters were damaged. Those helicopters were out of service 10 days, leaving me and the other students without flights and the school without flight training revenue.

Fortunately, the damage was discovered before a potential accident. The morning of my flight a student discovered a coin-sized dimple in one of the rotor blades. Someone else noticed a similar ding in the blades of the helicopter that had been parked beside it in the same hangar. It became pretty obvious that someone manually turned the blades of one helicopter, hitting the other, and causing tens of thousands of dollars of damage and lost income.

I learned two things from this experience: The value of a thorough preflight, and there must be a better way to park and store helicopters.

After a little research I discovered conventional helicopter protection devices don’t protect the entire machine and only a few protect the expensive and fragile rotor blades.

From this little but expensive incident the sHeli-Port™ helicopter storage and shipping case was born. After substantial patent searching, much prototyping, testing and an early vision, we developed the product we now commercialize as sHeli-Port. Finally, there is a way to secure the entire helicopter from any damage – hangar rash, tampering, weather, you name it –safely and securely.

I know my experience isn’t isolated. Have you seen or witnessed damage caused by an overcrowded or poor helicopter storage solution? Please tell us your worst war story.

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