NEWS RELEASE · 3rd November 2014
Hleijet, the company that provides scheduled commuter helicopter service between Vancouver and Victoria, as well as provincial air ambulance services, and charter services to BC’s Coastal sport fishing lodges, is proposing a year round heliport facility for Kitimat.
Helijet’s wholly owned subsidiary, Pacific Heliport Service Ltd. has operated the waterfront heliports in both Vancouver and Victoria for nearly 30 years and would lead the procurement establishment and ongoing management of the proposed Kitimat heliport.
“One of the areas being evaluated for a heliport site is near the Kitimat General Hospital and Health Center and proposed clinic,” said Danny Sitnam, Helijet’s President. “In terms of flying times, it would be approximately 13 minutes to Terrace and 30 minutes to Prince Rupert.”
Sitnam said discussion continue with the city and respective stakeholders, and believes the new heliport could be operational within 12 to 18 months once an agreement is reached.
“We believe that Kitimat’s growing importance to BC’s energy sector, as well as overall growth across the region means there’s real potential to create a world class heliport facility with the capacity to provide scheduled, charter and commercial services,” Sitnam explained. “The facility could also support services for the first responder organizations, as well as government agencies such as the RCMP and Search and Rescue. In addition, I believe there is also a great opportunity to use the heliport to grow the region’s tourism and ho9spitality sectors.”
Sitnam said Mayor Joanne Monaghan was key to the company taking a serious look at the prospects of a multipurpose heliport facility within the city core.
“Mayor Monaghan recognised that with the regions growth and increased industrial activity, a heliport makes sense as a valuable piece of new transportation infrastructure,” noted Sitnam. “Kitimat and the region have become busy places and when you have that much going on, a full service heliport is an important addition to the community, not just for business but for medical emergencies.”
Sitnam said an approved facility would come with Transport Canada certification, the capacity to accommodate a verity of helicopter sizes, a passenger lounge, crew accommodations, an aircraft hanger, fuel storage and vehicle access to the site.
Helijet international is a Canadian owned company and North America’s largest scheduled helicopter service carrying well over two million passengers in the past 28 years. In addition to it’s scheduled helicopter services, Helijet is a major service provider of dedicated medically equipped helicopters to the BC Air Ambulance service of British Columbia. Helijet provides exclusive use helicopter and business jet services to world renowned sport fishing resorts, Public Service and Energy companies throughout the West Coast of British Columbia and the Pacific North West.