CHI in Vertical Magazine as SAR Leader

In among the giants of the offshore transport industry in the Gulf of Mexico, there’s one operator that fulfills a unique and vital role with just two aircraft. That company is CHI Aviation, and that vital role is to provide 24/7 contract and ad hoc search-and-rescue (SAR) service to those working offshore. As for unique, it operates the only heavy SAR platform in the Gulf of Mexico — a Sikorsky S-92 — along with an AgustaWestland AW139.

CHI has been providing the service, from a base in Galliano, La., for about 18 months. Headquartered in Howell, Mich., CHI has become something of a multi-sector specialist in the heavy-lift world (see p.56, Vertical, Aug./Sept. 2014). However, the move into offshore SAR wasn’t something company president Chris Turner had been considering. “It was never a thought, because it’s not a market you can break into,” he told Vertical 911. “If you’re not already a vendor for the oil companies, and haven’t been audited by them, they won’t even talk to you.”