THE IDEA OF THE CSLI AIR WING
What is the CSLI Air Wing?
What are the expectations towards CSLI pilots?
What can CSLI pilots actually do ?
Within the CSLI this idea was born as an addition to the many other dedicated helpers when more and more pilots joined the CSLI. Because of the experience gained from past natural disasters, when helicopters were used in case of emergency, the idea was born to build a “CSLI Air Wing” and to integrate it into the CSLI. This idea was obviously kind of a “niche” within the usual relief organizations. Many adopted this new idea and signed up for the CSLI Air Wing (formerly called CSLO Air Service).
CSLI mission helicopter
A group of about 40 pilots forms an important part of the members of the CSLI. They were formerly members of the CSLO and have joined the CSLI. Some of them have a flight experience of several thousand hours of flight; this group consists of mission pilots, cargo & general aviation pilots, flight instructors as well as qualified private pilots. Following the principle of the CSLI other relief organizations currently build up and support similar structures in other countries.
We basically classify the pilots of the CSLI in three groups and without devaluating anyone: We distinguish mission pilots, experienced professional pilots and professional pilots. To be classified as mission pilot an experience of at least 850 hours as pilot in command (PIC) is needed. Mission pilots will fly missions in case of disaster. Experienced professional pilots who have an experience of at least 300 hours as PIC will perform flights in case of official events like flight days and special flight events for the disabled etc. The classification may furthermore depend on the exact type of flight license, i.e. whether it is a PPL (Private Pilot License) or one that entitles to perform commercial flights (Commercial Pilot License).
The flying squadrons in the clubs (FSV2000, Fliers Group Vienna) form the “humanitarian” CSLI backbone for the Air Wing, as they show the airport to disabled people and take care of them. Furthermore our pilots explain the airfield operations and aircraft to our visitors, offer sightseeing flights (if physically possible) and on occasion also offer longer distance flights in case of joint operations with other flight squadrons or clubs.
You can easily learn about our work and the tremendous success in various press releases and TV reports.
These flights are simply rated as private flights with passengers. At the beginning it is expected that the flights are financed by the pilot him-/herself. Until the CSLI Air Wing itself will have sufficient resources (through advertising by supporting members), the costs are replaced by the CSLI. Those pilots, however, that fly around with disabled people on their own expense, will get their “reward” for this in the form of “free flight hours”.
We do not expect more than 1-2 funded flight hours per year from every of our pilots. If there are not enough personal funds available, our pilots do not need to fly; the care for disabled people around the airport is at least as valuable! It is very important that the squadrons do not just wait until they get the order to act. They have to take the initiative and be there for the disabled people; thus our pilots can give a little more sense to their lives than just flying around in circles.
To avoid any kind of misunderstanding:
Not only pilots are welcome in the CSLI. Each one who wants to take care of disabled people is very important for our cause and can make a difference for the community!