Electronic Flight Bags
Our pilots stay busy during non-flight hours with a multitude of jobs. We train in new areas and take recurrent training. We update documents and procedures. We maintain aircraft and the equipment we use with our helicopters. We communicate with current and potential customers and coordinate flights and their logistics.
The advent of new technology keeps me busy creating ‘electronic flight bags’ for our pilots. Smart phones and iPads provide some amazing tools that enable us to do our job more efficiently, effectively, and safely. Our regulatory manuals, standard operating procedures, and many other useful documents we previously could not take along on a flight can be installed on an iPad. Plus, it can provide ‘moving map’ technology with a Papua New Guinea-specific terrain and location database, and we can use it for remote flight planning, calculating weight and balance, filing flight plans, and much more. The ability to send text messages from the aircraft through our flight tracking program, V2 Track, gives us a huge logistical benefit.
Another behind-the-scenes job is managing the purchase and transport of fuel, ensuring that an adequate stock is available for refueling when we fly into locations other than our home base or one of the few major airports. All fueling is done out of 200-liter steel drums, which must be trucked in to location or flown in when remote locations are accessible only by air. Given the few number of roads in PNG, the logistics of fuel placement are challenging, to say the least. To reach one very remote location, we truck the drums to a river, off-load them into dugout canoes, and ship them up the river for several hours.
Whatever the job—big or small, in the air or on the ground—we keep one purpose at the forefront of our minds: to make the name of Jesus Christ known through our actions! Getting the written and recorded Word of God into the hearts and minds of those who do not yet have it is and will remain our goal.