Southern Lakes Helicopters and Heliworks, our Queenstown based company, are the only operators in Southland able to operate and use night vision technology. The installation of Night Vision Goggles in our helicopters has enhanced the overall safety of our pilots and significantly increased our Medivac, Search and Rescue and law enforcement support capabilities by enabling us to provide a 24hour service.
How do night vision goggles help?
Night Vision Goggles work by intensifying any available ambient light (moonlight, starlight, street lights etc) up to 3500 times - creating an image which appears green when viewed through the goggles. This impressive technology enhances the pilot's visual acuity at night to 20/25 vision as opposed to unaided vision at night of 20/200. The difference between flying at night with or without goggles is a bit like comparing driving at night using just your park lights, and driving with full headlights and possibly a set of spots too. When it comes to Search and Rescue at night, a lone headlight in the bush can stand out like a beacon.
Southern lakes Helicopters are CAA approved operators of Night Vision equipment. Our aircraft are equipped to use IV generation III Night Vision Omni 4.