Maverick Helicopters, a Nevada-based charter and aerial tour operator and the largest EC130 operator in the world, has surpassed the 100,000-flight-hour milestone with its fleet of American Eurocopter EC130 helicopters.
“Maverick Helicopters was one of our initial customers for the EC130 and since taking their first delivery in 2003, they have grown into the largest operator of EC130s in the world,” said Marc Paganini, president and CEO of American Eurocopter. “That they have now accumulated more than 100,000 flight hours on their fleet is an amazing testimony to the company and the performance and reliability of our product.”
According to American Eurocopter, the EC130 was initially designed for the tourism industry. Its cabin can comfortably accommodate up to seven passengers. The helicopter is equipped with the Turbomeca ARRIEL 2B1 turbine engine, which offers a fast cruise speed of 130 knots. It also features the Fenestron tail rotor that provides an environmentally conscious sound signature and earned it the ECO-Star moniker.
Maverick Helicopters, founded in 1996, began operations with two aircraft and today has the largest dedicated fleet of helicopters serving the air tourism market in the Grand Canyon area. It offers a wide variety of tours featuring the Grand Canyon, the South Rim, Sedona, Ariz., and the lights of the Las Vegas Strip. Its tourism-based innovations include a multi-camera sky-cam video system that records every flight, giving passengers a personal DVD of their excursion. Maverick Helicopters also provides charter flights for corporate and personal-use customers on an on-demand basis.
“We are an all EC130 operation,” said John Mandernach, vice president of maintenance for Maverick Helicopters. “We have 32 aircraft currently in our fleet and will add two additional EC130s by the end of the year.
“We’ve been very satisfied with the EC130,” continued Mandernach. “Passengers love it. It offers the best visibility of any helicopter on the market today. The unmatched visibility coupled with its interior comfort, performance, and low noise signature makes the EC130 the perfect fit for our operation.”