Heli-taxi service grounded

A Montreal helicopter pilot has had his business dream shot down by Transport Canada.

Christian Assad started his helicopter ferrying business last fall, after repeated problems with the Champlain Bridge. He charged $99 for a one-way, four-minute trip over the St-Lawrence

But just a few weeks after he offered rides from the South Shore to Montreal the federal government ordered him to stop.

Transport Canada claims Assad is landing in a built up area.

If true, he would require a fully equipped helipad - something he says is difficult and expensive to build.... provided the city approves it in the first place.

But he claims he lands in a field east of the Technoparc by the Bonaventure Highway and therefore all he needs is a city permit.

He doesn't understand why the federal government is hindering his business instead of helping it grow.

Assad is hoping to iron out his differences with Transport Canada and get airborne as soon as possible.

Photo courtesy Helico Pro

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  1. clint posted on 02/25/2014 05:21 PM
    Hmmm..... taking money away from the tolls that are coming ?
    Thousands of helicopters needed to fill the demand ?
    Secret Al Qaeda training operation ?
    Somebody is not getting a cut ?
    Please enter your conspiracy theory here........
  2. rentro posted on 02/25/2014 08:08 PM
    Where did Peladeau senior land his daily helicopter when he lived in the laurentians and commuted? Isn't there also a helipad out near the Maurice Richard Arena and one called Kruger ? Maybe he has to pay someone for the right permit?
    1. Richard posted on 02/26/2014 01:30 PM
      @rentro Well, in the case of Peladeau, who lived right across the Lac L'Achigan from my house, he landed on a private helipad. I happened to witness from afar a lot of the tragic events unfolding when his sister passed away a few months back in a horrific, yet surprisingly avoidable car accident on the lake. There are a few private helipads on this lake for noisy, abusive, obnoxious rich folks who come and go at the expense of our hearing. Hey, it's a free country, in the sense that it's exactly the opposite of free.

      As for this story, I find it sad and unfortunate that yet another small company has to face bureaucratic ridiculousness in the aims of doing business in Quebec. The answer to ANY question in this province is invariably answered the same way: "NO." Sorry, "NON."
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