31-Jan-2023 Source: Columbia Helicopters
Columbia Helicopters, the world’s leading heavy-lift helicopter OEM, MRO, and operator, announced today it sold and has delivered a Columbia Model 107-II Vertol to Heliswiss International AG (HSI). The sale makes HSI the official launch customer for the aircraft in Europe.
Due to the uncertain future of the Ka32 and the imposed sanctions by European countries and Canada, HSI sought a long-term comparable and trusted workhorse for medium external load operations. With full OEM support, the standard category Columbia Model 107-II Vertol features a 22,000-lb (9,979-kg) lifting capability, internal and external cargo lift options, and 17-seat passenger capacity.
“The addition of the Columbia Model 107-II Vertol expands our fleet of heavy-lift helicopters, allowing us to better serve our existing clients and open new market segments in alignment with our business strategy,” says Ralf Walser, CEO of the Swiss Helicopter Group, parent company of HSI. “Working directly with Columbia, the aircraft’s manufacturer, provides us with the remarkable advantage of unique availability with extremely short downtimes.”
HSI will use the aircraft in its partnerships with governmental and private institutions for forest fire fighting, external load lifts, and rapid disaster response. The company plans to send the aircraft to Chile to fight fires and perform external load operations during the European winter season.
“We are pleased to support Heliswiss and the Swiss Helicopter Group as the European launch customer of our Columbia Model 107-II Vertol,” says Michael Tremlett, President of Columbia Helicopters Inc. “This partnership truly demonstrates Columbia’s dedication as an OEM to support international partners seeking highly capable heavy-lift solutions that can operate year-round.”