Flexjet Sikorsky S-76. Flexjet, a fractional jet provider, is launching a private helicopter segment that will include Associated Aircraft Group (AAG), a Sikorsky S-76 operator that was acquired last year by Flexjet parent Directional Aviation affiliate OneSky Flight. According to the firm, service will begin with 12 helicopters finished in the Flexjet livery and interior and will “ramp up as needed.” Sikorsky bought AAG in 1999 and utilized it to start the OEM’s fractional shares program. It primarily served the New York City area. Throughout the year, Flexjet helicopter operations will be based in the Northeastern states and Florida, connecting airports and city centers with short-haul regional locations including conventions, music festivals, and other sports and entertainment events. Flexjet also announced that it would provide its Gulfstream G650 fractional owners free helicopter hours and sell add-on fractional, lease, and charter access to the medium twin S-76s. For Flexjet aircraft owners traveling from airports to their ultimate destinations, the new division will provide on-demand regional transportation and last-mile transportation. Flexjet described the service as “a one-of-a-kind door-to-door travel solution not available from any other provider in the United States,” and said it expects its helicopter division to expand in the United States and Europe over the next five years as global demand for point-to-point vertical aviation grows. Eli Flint, president of Flexjet, will supervise the new division, which will be staffed by nearly 50 former AAG sales managers, technicians, operations team members, and pilots. “Flexjet’s new helicopter business strengthens our position as the industry leader in integrating fixed-wing operations and private urban mobility in the United States,” says the company. Flexjet CEO Michael Silvestro said, “This distinguishes us as the sole operator in our business to enable seamless travel.” “Today, an increasing number of visitors are looking for an alternative to crowded modes of transportation, preferring instead easier, safer, and less stressful solutions from start to finish.” The helicopter business will use Baldwin Safety’s safety management system (SMS), which comprises a preflight risk assessment program, a hazard reporting system, and a customized landing zone survey for off-airport operations, giving owners more options. It will follow the same weather and performance planning procedures as Flexjet’s jet program.

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