"Each mode of transport has different requirements. For air freight, you can choose between a PGA pallet or a towable solution. For sea freight, there is a choice between container loading (i.e. flat(rack) container) or RoRo loading (via RoRo, a Mafi forklift, or a tow bar). In addition, everything depends on the type of helicopter. How high and how wide is it? Can and will the rotor be dismounted or not? How far does the customer want the helicopter to be disassembled before shipping? And so on. The destination, the type of ship, and/or the type of shipping are also decisive."
"Ultimately, the customer makes the decisions. Our task is purely to estimate and limit as many risks as possible. We must think about the what, where, and how - before, during, and after the journey. My job doesn't stop when the helicopter is on board."
"Currently, for example, I am fully arranging a shipment from Italy to the Philippines, with three transshipments. Someone must follow everything up carefully so that nothing can go wrong. Not having any visual control myself is the hardest thing to hand over. Our local agents are our eyes, but even that is not always a guarantee. Recently we had a situation where a helicopter was not allowed on board without supervision. And yet suddenly it was shining on our wharf even though we had expressly forbidden it in our communication."
Petra knows that dockworkers do not always realize how much more vulnerable a helicopter is compared to a truck or bulldozer. "For them, it's business as usual. Maybe it's just as well, otherwise, no one would dare touch it. Fortunately, at the terminals in Zeebrugge I can always count on people who do a great job."