The Pressure is ON
Lights, running water, medical care. We all take these things for granted, along with the electrical power that makes them possible. When there is a disruption to the power supply, customers want answers, government wants answers, the press wants answers. More critically, they want the lights back on. How do you restore a hurricane-ravaged disaster site to full power? Step one is you get there with your personnel, equipment, tools and supplies - and you get there quickly, using air charter.
Fact - Air Charter is the Fastest Mode of Transportation on Earth
You cannot get humans or material between two points faster than when using private air charter. You aren't dependent on an air carrier's schedule. This can be particularly important immediately following a significant weather event such as a hurricane or severe winter storm. It can take days or even weeks for airlines to resume scheduled service operations following a disruption. With air charter, there are a wide variety of on-demand charter operators that don't operate commercial service routes, and are waiting and ready for dispatch to a disaster or other site.
There is also the issue of employee safety. We have all seen footage of stranded passengers after their flights are cancelled. Air charter does not depend on complex back-to-back flying, hence it is less prone to domino-effect disruptions. Secondly, disaster recovery sites can be volatile locations. If the situation deteriorates, air charter for your group you will get your people out of harm's way quickly.
Put the Gear in Here
A common hurdle our energy sector customers face is transporting hundreds of pounds of tools and equipment for linemen. A primary risk of damage or loss is a real concern with this gear is mixed in with public baggage, especially if your employees are routed on connecting flights. There is also the issue of space. With scheduled flights so full, it may not be possible to accommodate the full compliment of gear that each worker needs to transport with them. This is in addition to their personal baggage. Air charter offers ability to move thousands of pounds of baggage and gear along with the passenger contingent.
Can we Bring Trucks?
The short answer is yes. We can move just about anything using air charter cargo aircraft - and big aircraft at that. The efficacy of moving trucks via air charter depends on the relationship between cost and budget. If you can transport the trucks overland, that is the most economical option. Depending on the site location, sometimes ocean transport makes sense. Also, there are a limited number of aircraft capable of carrying utility trucks. Don't bank on sending 30 trucks by air all at once. Air charter is best saved for specialized equipment or tools that have to be on-site immediately or the entire restoration is in jeopardy.
Make Sure the Charter Aircraft is Mission Capable
Keep in mind that moving personnel and their equipment together may necessitate a larger aircraft than if you were just moving passengers with standard baggage. For example, we might recommend a 737 series aircraft to move 50 linemen. Even though a smaller 50 seat regional aircraft has enough seats accommodate this group size in theory, it may not have the physical space ("bulking out" in air charter parlance), or the payload capacity to carry 10,000 pounds of tools, not to mention personal baggage. Make sure that your charter broker is helping you to do the math on your payload needs. Review what your planned payloads will be prior to having them cover the market for you, including passenger weights, passenger baggage, and tools. We have seen this play out many times; an energy sector air charter gets put on an aircraft that is just too small for the mission, and often it is too late to adjust - the contracts are signed and the money wired. Avoid this by working with a broker that understands payloads and your specific needs.
Are They Ready for you?
So you have the workforce ready to blast off and restore power to the site, but is the site ready for you? Just because you arranged an emergency recovery air charter flight stateside does not necessarily mean it is ready for dispatch. It is important that your air charter broker is able to determine the situation on the ground. Is the airport open? Are there sufficient ground personnel to service the aircraft? Is there water available? Are the navigation and landings aids operational? Is fuel available? Is the airport utilizing slot controls? What is the weather situation? Wind velocity and direction? Are they accepting traffic, and if not, when will they be accepting traffic? If required, has a slot been applied for and has your aircraft received an arrival slot. Assuming that your air charter broker gets you a green light on all of the aforementioned factors, you will want to ensure that living quarters are operational and that ground transportation is able to pick-up the passengers and their gear.
The time to arrange emergency response air charter is not during or after an emergency. Make air charter an integral part of your response plan. Select a vendor in advance, and give the lawyers plenty of time to work through agreements, insurance requirements and any other documents. We cannot stress enough that demand is very high for air charter following a disaster. Get a partner on board well ahead of any air charter need. Learn about how we can help you with your emergency response air charter. You'll be glad you did!