From the Niagara Falls Review:
Niagara Helicopters has been sold, but Ruedi Hafen will continue to be the public face of the company.
Anna Pierce, vice-president of Niagara Helicopters, confirmed to The Niagara Falls Review Thursday that a deal was reached with Helicopter Transport Services on Dec. 7.
“It was something that has been in the process for quite awhile,” said Pierce, adding further details will be made public in the new year.
“The same team is still going to be here. It will mean a lot of cost savings for us.”
From Business Link Niagara:
Niagara Falls is one of the world’s most recognized views in the world. But for the past 25 years, only one company has been world famous for offering breathtaking aerial tours of the mighty Niagara—Niagara Helicopters Limited. Located along the Niagara Parkway, Niagara Helicopters has had incredible success with thousands of satisfied customers over their two and a half decades in business.
Niagara Helicopters’ ongoing achievements can be traced back to the hard work and vision of company owner and chief pilot, Ruedi Hafen.
From the Niagara Falls Review:
Niagara Helicopters president Ruedi Hafen’s “quick-thinking and airmanship” were the reasons he was a finalist for Aviator of the Year, but he just couldn’t edge out the compelling story of U. S. Airways pilot Capt. Chesley Sullenberger.
“I feel really good to be chosen as the only helicopter pilot in the world amongst all those airplane pilots,” Hafen wrote in an email after the awards banquet in Dubai Saturday.
Hafen was one of four finalists for Aviator of the Year, nominated for the delicate manoeuvring of his helicopter during the successful rescue of a man from the frigid water below the Horseshoe Falls in March.
“All of us who made this happen, we must have done a great job, we have been recognized and we must continue ‘what we do safe, do best and do with love,'” said Hafen, who emphasizes safety during rescues, but also in day-to-day business of shuttling tourists over Niagara Falls.
From a PRWeb press release (via Yahoo! News):
Ruedi Hafen, President and Chief Pilot of Niagara Helicopters has been nominated under Aviator of the Year for his daring rescue of the man who went over Niagara Falls this past March 11, 2009.
The man who plunged over the Niagara Falls in March did not want to be saved, but Ruedi Hafen refused to give up. Following up an emergency call, Hafen – founder of tourist flight operator Niagara Helicopters – hovered his Bell 407 over the drowning man, so a police officer could attach a sling to his arm. When he resisted, Hafen used the aircraft’s downdraft to push the would-be suicide safely to shore. Swiss-born Hafen -who has taken Niagara Helicopters to $6 million revenues in 20 years with his Niagara Falls helicopter tour and specialty flight service – was praised in media coverage for his courage, quick-thinking and airmanship.
“I am honoured to be included in this category with such incredible people as Captain Chesley Sullenberger, Iren Dornier and Jose Miguel Ceppi” said Mr. Hafen.
From the Associated Press via the San Francisco Chronicle:
Up here, it becomes clear what helicopter pilot Ruedi Hafen has said on the ground: A helicopter offers a view of Niagara Falls like no other, and no one wants to leave without a picture, or 10.
It’s also obvious just how imposing the landscape really is with its foaming white cascades, steep and rocky escarpment and swirling green river and whirlpool.
Twenty-eight years at the controls of his fleet of sightseeing helicopters have given Hafen a unique perspective of the natural wonder straddling the United States and Canadian border. Perhaps more than anyone else, he has seen the good and the bad, from the happiest tourists drinking in the scenery, to the despondent who allow themselves to be swallowed by it.
From a PR Web press release seen on Yahoo! News:
Niagara Helicopters has launched a special offer for their Niagara Falls sightseeing tours when visitors use the new GO Train service from Toronto to Niagara Falls. Effective July 11th, 2009, Niagara Helicopters is happy to offer all riders utilizing the GO Train to Niagara Falls a $23* discount per adult and $12* discount per child (3-11 years). Visitors should simply show a valid GO Train pass to receive this special rate.
Ruedi Hafen, President and Chief Pilot smiles as he hears that GO Trains will be rolling into the VIA station just around the corner from Niagara Helicopters. “That’s great,” he says, “More people coming to Niagara; less cars on the road…it really is a great idea!”