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USAIG and Airbus offer Safety Bucks incentive
The Airbus Helicopters North America Training Center in Texas boasts a wide range of opportunities for operators to apply Safety Bucks, a USAIG scheme that offers up to $2,500 annually in training investments.
Kevin Kovarik, USAIG senior vice president and lead for rotary wing underwriting.
Read this story in our September 2020 printed issue.

USAIG and Airbus Helicopters North America (AHNA) are continuing their tradition of encouraging helicopter operators to participate in recurrent training endorsed by aircraft manufacturers. The AHNA Training Center in Grand Prairie, Texas has long been a USAIG ‘Safety Bucks’ programme participant. The programme enables policyholders that operate turbine-powered helicopters to select $2,500 in Safety Bucks to go toward helicopter pilot or maintenance technician training expenses in each year of policy coverage.

USAIG started Safety Bucks in the 1990s to assist and incentivise policyholders to make recurrent helicopter simulator training standard practice. It was later expanded to include helicopter maintenance technician training and some in-aircraft activities. In 2015 it was integrated into USAIG's broader Performance Vector safety initiative, which provides a portfolio of safety services from which eligible policyholders can make one annual selection.

“Safety Bucks is a great option as the annual safety benefit for many of our helicopter policyholders,” says Kevin Kovarik, USAIG Senior VP and lead for rotary wing underwriting. “We are proud to boost the reach and positive impact of our policyholders' safety and training resources, and excited to continue expanding opportunities with Airbus Helicopters.”

The AHNA Training Center leverages its experienced instructors and modern fleet of company-owned training aircraft and training devices to deliver initial and recurrent maintenance and flight training courses for the light-through-heavy range of Airbus Helicopters models. The AHNA Training Center looks forward to the upcoming rollout of a new level D H145 full flight simulator by its simulation partner Helisim, which already owns and operates AS350, EC1335 and EC145 simulation devices. These simulators complement Airbus Helicopters' courses such as Inadvertent Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IIMC), which was designed to combat the increasing number of fatal IIMC accidents by providing pilots with effective avoidance and recovery techniques.

USAIG, Airbus Helicopters and Helisim recognise that IIMC training addresses a critical safety threat faced by the entire helicopter industry, which triggered a discussion about how USAIG could encourage its policyholders to have pilots attend the IIMC course, and an opportunity was born. USAIG and the AHNA Training Center will extend the value of a $2,500 USAIG Safety Bucks certificate to fully cover one pilot's full IIMC course tuition for courses booked within the remainder of calendar year 2020 and commenced before 1 July 2021. Safety Bucks will retain their standard face value when applied to any other AHNA Training Center courses.

“We believe the IIMC course is a must-have for any helicopter pilot,” states Lindsay Cunningham, head of customer training for AHNA. “This limited-time offer is a great way for operators who are USAIG policyholders to benefit from the course while deriving maximum advantage from their Safety Bucks.”

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