The Helicopter Association International (HAI), an organization representing more than 1,100 companies throughout the world, is pushing back against proposed air tour bans in multiple United States National Parks.
According to the National Parks Traveler, the ban would completely shut down tours at Badlands National Park and Mount Rushmore National Monument. Additionally, the new restrictions would limit the number of tours at Haleakalā and Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Parks.
A statement posted to the HAI’s Facebook page claims that limiting the number of air tours would prevent thousands of tourists from being able to fully appreciate the natural beauty of the national parks and lead to multiple operations shutting down. The thirty day public comment period on the restrictions ends on June 20.
“The National Park Service (NPS) and the FAA are rewriting the rules for air tours over US national parks. Their draft Air Tour Management Plans (ATMPs) for some parks eliminate ALL air tours; others cut air tours by 50% or more. Take action NOW by submitting public comments by June 20, 2023, at rotor.org/actnow.
Besides closing off opportunities for thousands of visitors to enjoy the natural beauty of our parks, the NPS aims to cut back air-tour flights to such a degree that some tour operations will close.”
Image Credit: HAI Heli-Expo via Facebook