Mountain West Helicopters and Baldwin Aviation Collaborate to Qualify for HAI Safety Accreditation Program

Hilton Head Island, SC — Mountain West Helicopters and Baldwin Aviation, headquartered on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, announced today that they are collaborating on obtaining IS-BAO registration for the Alpine, Utah-based flight operation...


Hilton Head Island, SC — Mountain West Helicopters and Baldwin Aviation, headquartered on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, announced today that they are collaborating on obtaining IS-BAO registration for the Alpine, Utah-based flight operation under a new program launched recently by the Helicopter Association International (HAI) and the International Business Aircraft Council (IBAC). Baldwin is highly experienced in assisting flight departments — both small and large—in establishing and implementing the type of Safety Management Systems (SMS) necessary to achieve accreditation under the HAI/IBAC guidelines proposed by the two organizations at the annual Heli-Expo in February. The helicopter safety accreditation program will follow the precedent introduced by IBAC in 2002, the International Standard for Business Aviation Operations (IS-BAO). Applicants for accreditation can begin applying in June, HAI said.

“We are very pleased to be working with Baldwin Aviation on IS-BAO registration,” said Bryan Burr, President of Mountain West Helicopters. “We consider it an honor to be the first helicopter operators to do so and this is a very practical consideration for us, too, since IS-BAO certification will lend even more credibility and strength to our commitment to managing risk appropriately and providing the safest and most reliable operations possible. We are heavily involved in government contracting...fire suppression, post fire reclamation, remote area aerial construction, and other demanding helicopter operations. That means operating in highly varied terrain, at low airspeeds with heavy external loads — not going straight and level for three hours from one airport to another — so we feel it’s imperative to have a well-defined, industry-leading safety and risk management system in place. Baldwin Aviation provides us with the expertise and tailored approach that we need to meet the IS-BAO standards,” Burr added.

Mountain West Helicopters flies the very first Kaman K1200 KMAX helicopter sold to a commercial operator, acquiring it new in 1995. They have accumulated more than 20,000 hours on the airframe, primarily in fire fighting and timber harvesting operations throughout the Intermountain West. They have also flown operations on both coasts. They currently have aircraft based in Hamilton and Bozeman, Montana, as well.

“We don’t need to wait until June to begin assisting operators in the development of Safety Management Systems, or creating programs that will meet IS-BAO standards,” said Don Baldwin, CEO and founder of Baldwin Aviation. “We already have an established reputation for developing tools to help helicopter and fixed wing flight organizations keep track of the myriad of requirements that are part of managing a safe and efficient operation. We’re the first and only firm of our kind to achieve IS-BAO Registration for our safety program, receiving certification in February 2007. We work with our clients to tailor our online, proprietary Safety Management Systems to their specific operational requirements providing proven techniques, established resources, and consistent monitoring of operations,” he added.

Baldwin explained that “IS-BAO establishes a code of best practices which essentially structures ISO 9000 principles to apply to aviation safety. It is a continuous improvement program that prescribes an audit every two years and stimulates an ongoing self-audit program to ensure currency and relevance.”

This content continues onto the next page...

We Recommend