Bell Helicopter has clinched Canadian approval for a 227kg (500lb) increase in the maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of its model 429 twin-engine helicopter.

"The increase [to 3,405kg] will enable the 429 to carry additional fuel reserves, increasing both range and loiter times and enhance its instrument flight rules utility," said Bell.

The additional gross weight also boosts the 429's operational performance within key markets including emergency medical services and law enforcement, it added, and paves the way for operators to equip the 429 with additional options including a helicopter terrain awareness warning system, a radar altimeter, cockpit voice/flight data recorder and strobe lights.

The MTOW enhancement can be retrofitted to the 429 fleet through the airframer's service centre network, said Bell.


A Eurocopter AS365 N3 Dauphin simulator operated in Bengaluru, India, by a joint venture between Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) and CAE has achieved Level D certification.

The Helicopter Academy to Train by Simulation of Flying training centre in Bengaluru operates simulators for the AS365 N3, Bell 412 and HAL Dhruv.


AgustaWestland has delivered Japan's first GrandNew helicopter to Kagoshima International Aviation.

The light twin-engine aircraft will provide emergency medical services throughout the Kagoshima region, southern Japan.


India's Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has responded to safety concerns over the use of helicopters by political parties to assist them during the country's current election campaign.

The government agency mandated that flight crew of all chartered aircraft must not allow passengers to board and disembark the helicopter until the propellers are stationary.

Source: Flight International