Airbus Helicopters, Precise Flight Inc. working to reduce bird strikes
September 14, 2016 By Airbus Helicopters
Airbus Helicopters, Inc. and Precise Flight, Inc. have announced today that they have entered into a supply agreement for the Pulselite Bird Strike Prevention System which will be offered as an option on all Airbus Helicopters models marketed in the United States. The Pulselite System is an FAA certified lightweight electrical system controller that alternately pulses the landing and auxiliary lights of a helicopter, thereby increasing its visibility and reflecting the speed and directional movement of the aircraft. The Pulselite System has been shown to reduce bird strikes up to 66%, according to Precise Flight.
The recent exponential growth in global bird populations, combined with the increase in global air traffic, has caused bird strikes to become a primary safety threat and financial burden to rotorcraft operators. Leaders at Airbus Helicopters, Inc. said the time to act was now.
“Airbus Helicopters is committed to being the industry leader in safety and innovation,” said Lindsay Cunningham, Airbus Helicopters, Inc.’s Director of Aviation Safety. “Bird strikes are a growing problem for helicopter operators. We are optimistic that the Pulselite System will help to reduce the number of occurrences, and we are proud to offer it as an option to our customers,” Cunningham said.
Increased media attention on bird strikes, including the recent motion picture starring Tom Hanks about US Airways Flight 1549 that was forced to land in the Hudson River after multiple bird strikes caused engine failure, has increased public awareness of the threat of bird strikes.
“The ‘Sully’ Sullenberger movie has directed significant public attention to the threat of bird strikes and has elevated the related safety conversations among aviators,” said Doug La Placa, Chief Executive Officer of Precise Flight. “Offering the Pulselite System as a safety option to their customers is a great example of Airbus Helicopters, Inc.’s industry-leading commitment to safety, and their ability to quickly respond to the ever changing conditions of aviation,” La Placa said.