AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 32

PILOT BRIEFING
|

AVIATION JOBS

|

VIEW THE

VIDEO

Winch a sea captain, mug a buffalo
For more variety in your aviation job choice, see Brim Aviation
B Y A LTO N K . M A R S H

IMAGINE YOURSELF A HELICOPTER PILOT-

unless you are one of 14,264 AOPA members
who already fly them. Next, imagine you are
going to pick up a ship captain on a hoist but
with your rotor blades 10 feet from the ship
structure. Now, imagine doing that at night.
Pilots of Brim Aviation in Astoria,
Oregon, not only do that at night, they do it
up to 17 times in one night. Ships need specialized captains to pilot them across the
four-mile-wide Columbia River Bar-a nasty
obstacle of boiling water that has claimed
400 ocean-going ships since 1794-2,000 if
you count the small boats, too. It's where the
Columbia River shoots like a bullet into the
Pacific Ocean, unfettered by the deltas that
slow and calm the Mississippi River where
it meets the Gulf of Mexico. A helicopter like
Brim's new twin-engine AgustaWestland
109SP is the best way for captains with special knowledge of the bar to meet arriving
32  |  AOPA PILOT  December 2013

ships or depart from outbounders-especially when waves are 15
to 20 feet. Ten-foot waves equal,
"a nice summer day for us," said
Gene Hill, Brim's chief pilot.
Brim's crews are good at what
they do. It was only 28 seconds
from the time the Agusta began its
hover above the deck of a bulker-
a ship with cargo cranes that must
be avoided by the helo pilot-
and the time the captain's head
appeared above the floor level of
the cabin. During that time the
hook was lowered, the captain
attached, and the hoist completed.
Crews make the trip 2,500
times a year, Brim said. "If there
was a road dug in the sea, we
would have a 20-foot rut in it," said
hoist operator Russ Scheel. "We do
it the same way every time."
The company was started
by Burl Brim, owner of a Cirrus
SR22, and has branches in
Texas and Arizona with headquarters in
Ashland, Oregon.
In winter Brim crews using MD500 and
MD600N helicopters to catch bison in the
Henry Mountains of south-central Utah. A
Brim crewmember shoots them with a gun
that fires a net and another Brim employee-
a "mugger"-wrestles it to the ground to
take blood and tissue samples. The buffalo
are fitted with a transmitter broadcasting a
GPS position that lasts two years.
Brim crews do other interesting things,
like setting fire to the old armament ranges
of Fort Ord (closed in 1994) at Monterey Bay,
California, to expose unexploded ordinance.
They rescue boaters from the Oregon River
in southern Oregon, and train the Beijing
police in search and rescue. But those are
stories for another day.
EMAIL alton.marsh@aopa.org

Fly along with us in this online video.

r!
No autoh ov e
AGUSTA COMES WELL EQUIPPED
Brim's AgustaWestland 109SP
comes equipped with enhanced
vision by Max-Viz, a four-axis
autohover autopilot from Sagem
Avionics, and the Cobham
FlightLogic terrain display. Brim
pilots do not autohover beside
ships. There are dual GPS, VOR,
and ILS navigation receivers
as well as an air data attitude
and heading reference system
(ADAHRS). While ships automatically transmit a GPS location,
the helicopters use Honeywell
RDR 2000 weather radars to
find the ships. Occasionally they
land on ships.

99% f o re ig n

sh ip s

TALKING PAST THE LANGUAGE
BARRIER
Since 99 percent of ships arriving
at Astoria, Oregon, are foreign,
helicopter pilots taking channel
pilots to them keep communication simple. "We'll say, 'Please
open all deck lights,' followed by,
'Open all in-port lighting,'" said
Brim Chief Pilot Gene Hill. "Open
lights means different things in
different cultures. With our Russian ships, open all lights means
you open the switches, which
turns them off."

our s

>2,500 h

WANT THE JOB?
You need to have a commercial
helicopter certificate, Brim Aviation founder Burl Brim said. You
also need instrument and multiengine ratings. "I prefer to have
pilots that have 2,500 hours or
more. This is a tough job. Tough
conditions. Lot of weather.
Instrument conditions. It's more
instrument flying than it is VFR
flying, especially at night. When
you take off to go offshore at
night, you're flying into a black
hole."



AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013

AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013
Contents
President’s Position
Visual Approach
Letters
Waypoints
Proficient Pilot
Foundation Focus
License to Learn
Pilot Counsel
Fly Well
What Happens in Vegas...
AOPA Sweepstakes
Aviation Jobs
Gift Guide
Pilot Products
Pilot Products
News
People
Yacht of the Air
Around the World in 25 Days
Aviation Legends Walter Extra
Safety Pilot Landmark Accident: Unpredicted, Unadvised, Unaware
Summit 2013: Meeting Mr. Baker
Technique
Proficiency
Wx Watch
Technology
Ownership
Frugal Flier
Never Again
State and Local Action
Member Products
AOPA Foundation
Member Services
Government Affairs
AOPA Insurance Agency
Fly by Wire
Pilots
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - President’s Position
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 6
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Visual Approach
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Letters
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Waypoints
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Proficient Pilot
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Foundation Focus
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - License to Learn
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Pilot Counsel
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Fly Well
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - What Happens in Vegas...
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - AOPA Sweepstakes
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Aviation Jobs
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Gift Guide
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Pilot Products
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Pilot Products
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - News
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - People
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Yacht of the Air
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 43
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 44
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Around the World in 25 Days
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 51
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 52
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 53
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 54
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 55
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 56
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 57
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 58
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 59
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Aviation Legends Walter Extra
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 61
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 62
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 63
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Safety Pilot Landmark Accident: Unpredicted, Unadvised, Unaware
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 65
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 66
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 67
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Summit 2013: Meeting Mr. Baker
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 69
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 70
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 71
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Technique
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 73
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 74
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 75
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Proficiency
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 77
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 78
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Wx Watch
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 80
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Technology
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 82
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Ownership
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 84
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 85
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Frugal Flier
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 87
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Never Again
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 89
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 90
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 91
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - State and Local Action
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 93
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Member Products
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 95
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - AOPA Foundation
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 97
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Member Services
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 99
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Government Affairs
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 101
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - AOPA Insurance Agency
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 103
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 104
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 105
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 106
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Fly by Wire
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 108
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 109
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 110
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - 111
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Pilots
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - December 2013 - Cover4
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