“I’m paranoid and diligent, so it seemed like the perfect mix.”
Eric James Hamp, who piloted Chinook helicopters for the 101st Airborne Division, 159th Aviation Brigade in Africa, Iraq and Afghanistan, now serves as Director of Safety for Blue Hawaiian Helicopters. He says safety and risk management are their top priorities for guests and staff, although a lot of the practices remain subtly behind the scenes.
“In a lot of ways, we try to make it like Disneyland,” he explains. “It’s safety but you just don’t realize it!”
Hamp has a passion and respect for helicopters, and he’s not alone. World Helicopter Day on August 20 is a global celebration held on the third Sunday of August each year, aimed at raising awareness of the contributions that helicopters make to society.
To mark the occasion, Blue Hawaiian Helicopters is offering guests a 15% discount on all helicopter tours that occur on Sunday, August 20, 2017. This special offer is good for any helicopter tours that day on Maui, O‘ahu, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i Island. A portion of the proceeds generated will be donated to Hawai‘i’s Make A Wish Foundation.
Celebrated as one of the world’s greatest engineering innovations, helicopters assist with rescues, disaster relief, transportation, firefighting, medical transfers, power line maintenance, tourism, agriculture and more. The industry employs more than 500,000 people and there are an estimated 56,200 helicopters worldwide. Visit the World Helicopter Day website  to learn more.
Helicopters have incredible range of movement and maneuvering ability. Hamp says while a plane is a fixed-wing aircraft, a helicopter’s spinning blades give it a rotary wing.
“It causes what’s called a rotational relative wind, which is what produces lift,” he says. “In an airplane you need forward movement in order for that lift to be produced; in a helicopter, the aircraft can be stationary at zero speed and you’re getting lift, because it’s blades are moving in that rotational plane, which allows it to hover in place.”
Blue Hawaiian Helicopter tours, as well as private charters, run at varying times throughout the day and can be booked in advance online or by phone for all four major Hawaiian Islands.
Guests are asked to mention World Helicopters Day when booking to enjoy the special discount. For more information, or to book your next aerial adventure, please visit Blue Hawaiian Helicopters’ website  or call 800-745-BLUE (2583).