Helijet, a helicopter airline, says they will be first Canadian air carrier to provide passenger services through an electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.
The air carrier says they have placed an order for the Alia aircraft through BETA Technolgies. They say it will bring quieter, lower cost and sustainable air transport to southwestern B.C. and the Pacific Northwest.
With an ability to take off vertically, they add it will have “tremendous” potential to enhance Helijet’s provision for emergency, response, air ambulance and organ transfer services. It can hold five passengers and is on track to be certified by 2026.
Helijet CEO Danny Sitnam says the partnership will let them pursue more low-emission options.
“We are committed to introducing and integrating zero-emission, vertical lift technologies and related ground/building infrastructure in the communities we serve and look forward to transforming out current heliport infrastructure to meet future urban air mobility vertiport standards,” said Sitnam.
B.C. premier David Eby says the province is committed to embracing and supporting sustainable aviation technology and related infrastructure development.
“This provincial government recognizes the potential of advanced air mobility to decarbonize the aviation sector, improve regional connectivity, improve emergency response times and introduce new manufacturing opportunities in our province,” said Eby.
“We congratulate Helijet on their exciting news and look forward to British Columbia becoming a leader in the advanced air mobility sector.”
Helijet is a Canadian-owned company based at the Vancouver International Airport and has carried over 2.4 million passengers in the last 35 years.