Press Releases

Whitney Helicopters Buys EC120Bs, AS350B3

Orlando – March 1, 2007 – HAI 2007

Whitney Helicopters, a new oil and gas exploration service being launched in Fort St. John, British Columbia, is purchasing two Eurocopter EC120Bs and one AS350BS to form its initial fleet.  The two EC120s are due for delivery in 2008, while the AS350B3 will be delivered in 2009.

“Fort St. John is known as B.C.’s oil and gas capital,” says Les Whitney, President of Whitney Helicopters. “Yet despite this fact, there have been no locally owned-and-operated helicopter operators until now.”

“As well, the outside operators who have serviced this region have been doing so using Bell Jet Rangers, “Whitney adds.  “Although they are proven aircraft, they are also last century’s technology.  This is why Whitney Helicopters has selected Eurocopter helicopters: Both the EC120B and the AS350B3 represent the state-of-the-art in sophisticated, safe, capable, and robust aircraft. Our customers deserve the best, and the challenges of oil and gas exploration demand it.  This is why we’re launching with Eurocopter.”

The Eurocopter EC120B can transport five people in extremely quiet comfort, thanks to its Fenestron shrouded tail rotor.  Its Safran ARRIUS 2F engine allows the EC120B to fast cruise at 120 knots (223 kph).

The Eurocopter AS350B3 is a truly high performance, heavy-duty single engine helicopter.  It offers room for 6-7 occupants, a maximum weight capacity of 2,250 kgs/4,960 lbs, and a fast cruising speed of 140 knots (279 kph).  The AS350B3 is the aircraft that operators choose for the toughest jobs in the most diverse and demanding of flying conditions.

“New times call for innovation, both in terms of operators and helicopter technology,” says Edouard Gaillat, President of Eurocopter Canada Limited.  “Entrepreneurs such as Les Whitney help keep the Canadian helicopter industry fresh and dynamic, while Eurocopter products provide them with the leading-edge technology they need to succeed.”

Eurocopter Canada Limited (www.eurocopter.ca) is a subsidiary of Eurocopter.  Eurocopter Canada based in Fort Erie, Ontario has customer support centres in Vancouver, British Columbia and Montreal, Quebec.  Established in 1992, the Franco-German-Spanish Eurocopter Group is a Division of EADS, a world leader in aerospace, defense and related services. The Eurocopter Group employs approx. 14,000 people. In 2006, Eurocopter confirmed its position as the world’s No. 1 helicopter manufacturer with a turnover of 3.8 billion euros, orders for 615 new helicopters, and a 52 percent market share in the civilian/commercial and parapublic sectors. Overall, the Group’s products account for 30 percent of the total world helicopter fleet. Its strong worldwide presence is ensured by its 17 subsidiaries on five continents, along with a dense network of distributors, certified agents and maintenance centers. More than 9,800 Eurocopter helicopters are currently in service with over 2,800 customers in 140 countries. Eurocopter offers the largest range of commercial and military helicopters in the world.

100 years of vertical flight

The first vertical flight ever made was made by Paul Cornu in 1907. Since then great pioneering spirit, technological advances and innovative ideas have turned the helicopter into an aircraft without which air rescue as we know it would be unimaginable and which makes a significant contribution towards the safety and protection of individuals and to economic development. Eurocopter is proud to join in celebrating this centenary and its own passion for helicopters in 2007.

For more information, please contact:

Laura SENECAL
Tel : + 905 871-7772
Fax :+ 905 871-3599
laura.senecal[at]eurocopter.ca
Eurocopter Canada Limited

Cécile VION-LANCTUIT
Tel: + 33 (0)1 49 34 45 04
Mob:+ 33 (0)6 72 83 90 67
cecile.vion-lanctuit[at]eurocopter.com

Christina GOTZHEIN
Tel : + 49 (0) 89 6000 64 88
Fax :+ 49 (0) 89 6000 44 37
christina.gotzhein[at]eurocopter.com

Jesus RUIZ
Tel: +34 91 379.66.04
Fax: +34 91 379 66 10
jesus.ruiz[at]eurocopter.com

Website: www.eurocopter.com