The ubiquitous helicopter is used as a work horse across a multitude of industries due its large lifting capacity. When used for industrial or commercial purposes, the helicopter will typically have a hook fitted into its underbelly which can then have various types of payload attached using a long cable or rope.
The mechanics of the hook and long-line allow the pilot to pick up and release the payload from the cockpit. The size and power of the helicopter dictates how heavy a payload the helicopter can lift. The total payload capacity available is a combination of the weight of the payload carried in the helicopters internal cargo locations as well as the weight of the payload slung underneath the helicopter.
Here at Touchdown Helicopters we specialise in precision external load operations. We are able to undetake any operation usually tasked to a fixed or mobile crane platform and deliver the payload to it final resting location with equivalent precision. In many cases, where physical size restricts access, a helicopter will be the only heavy lift option available.
The advantage of a helicopter is that the payload can be also lifted to high altitude where required; on tops of buildings or mountains, or in locations where terrain also prevents access by ground based lifting equipment.
In most instances, the cost of a helicopter to lift heavy equipment will be far cheaper than using either a fixed or mobile crane. Cranes require positioning on site and setting up before lifting can begin, usually also requiring road closures and traffic management for a full day (depending on the size of the job).
However, the helicopter platform can be deployed to the site, connected to the payload and have it positioned within minutes. Considering that helicopter costs are charged by the hour this can be extremely cost effective for such lifting jobs.
Our top priority, of course, is safety. Touchdown Helicopters always leads any engagement with a safety audit to identify any hazards or risks asscociated with the job request. We will also ensure compliance with all government regulatory requirements for operations both on the ground and in the air.
Where necessary, Touchdown Helicopters can provide qualified ground crew (riggers and doggers) to ensure safe and efficient operations whilst slinging is being conducted.
Touchdown Helicopters can be engaged to provide a lifting solution for the following
- Accurate placement of airconditioners, fans, ducting and platforms
- Rooftop building materials including roof sheets and steel structural materials
- Spa baths onto balconies, patios
- Swimming pools into back gardens
- Wet concrete in kibbles
- Building site materials such as house frames, timber packs and plasterboard
- Positioning of water tanks
- Landscaping materials such as sand, rock, soil and timber
In descending order, the lift capacity of our helicopter fleet is –
- Sikorsky UH60 (Blackhawk) 3500kg
- Bell UH1H (Huey) 1700kg
- Airbus AS350B3 (Squirrel) 1200kg
- Airbus AS350B2 (Squirrel) 750kg
All of our helicopters operate with a long line, cargo net and remote hook.