In recent weeks, Erickson Aircrane helicopter pilots have been fighting fires on the burning hillsides in Greece, eight miles north of Elefsina. While working in tandem with the Greek Air Force to fight the fires on Sunday, June 26th, two Aircranes were among the first responders to aid a downed Greek Air Force airplane, a Canadair CL-215 waterbomber, that had crash-landed on a hillside.
Seeing the smoke rising from the fuselage, two Erickson Aircranes responded: N164AC, piloted by Don McLeod and Jeff Brenhaug; and N957AC, piloted by Jeff Shelton and Mike Strasser. Erickson teams dropped water on the downed fixed-wing Canadair aircraft. More than a dozen light coverage water drops were made over the burning plane, allowing the downed pilots to escape and reach the safety of a nearby road. A full report on the incident can be read at Skies Magazine here.
A ceremony was held on Tuesday, July 5th in appreciation of the efforts of the Erickson crew members, conducted at the Ministry of Public Order in Athens, which is the department responsible for Civil Protection to include the Hellenic Fire Department. The gathering was attended by the General Secretary for the Ministry of Public Order, the General Secretary of Civil Protection, the Chief of the Air Force, the Chief of the Hellenic Fire Brigade and the Chief of Police.
Awards were presented by Mr. Nikos Toskas, the Deputy Minister of Civil Protection, who expressed his deepest gratitude to the Erickson crew who had clearly reacted to an emergency situation in a professional and highly efficient manner, resulting in the likely prevention of loss of life. He recognized the skill and judgment taken to do so and also our long history of working in Greece. The Chief of the Air Force, Mr. Christos Vaitsis also commended the crews for their airmanship and reflected on our performance and how well we cooperate with their various squadrons throughout the fire season. More images and a video of the ceremony can be found at the Greek Ministry’s website here.
After lightning stuck a piece of the Sky Station sculpture on Kansas City’s Bartle Hall, the city called upon Erickson’s Aircrane to remove the 24,000 pound piece of artwork for repair. The 40-foot-tall, 35-foot-wide, sculpture is one of four that adorn the hall, which in total, are appraised at $5 million. Read more
In March, on Easter Sunday, Aircrane N159AC replaced 23 air-conditioning units on the roof of Providence Place Mall in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. Because of the urban setting, the Aircrane’s work quickly drew a crowd of spectators in person and online. Read more
Read Erickson’s 2015 Annual Report.
Aviation International Online featured Erickson’s qualification as a subcontractor in a pool of prime contractors who have been awarded $1.425 billion for counter-narcotics and global-threat operations, logistics and training support. These contract vehicles allow Erickson’s Global Defense & Security team to bid on specific task orders, supporting interdiction of narcotics trade and assisting in the global war on terrorism.
Recently featured in Smart Solutions, the newsletter of the Mechanical Contractors Association of America, was Erickson’s safe and successful lift of 44 sections of rooftop heating and air-conditioning units (HVAC) atop the largest solar panel factory in the western hemisphere. Working with general contractor LP Ciminelli and John W. Danforth Co. in November 2015, Erickson flew a Sikorsky S-64 Aircrane helicopter above SolarCity’s 1.2-million-square-foot factory in Buffalo, New York. The Aircrane has a 25,000 pound lift capacity and easily carried the HVAC units – weighing between 14,000 and 18,000 pounds – in less than seven hours. Read more