MUMBAI: After a series of Helicopter accidents landed Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in trouble five times in the last nine months, the state government Thursday came out with a ‘helipad policy’ that spells out the design specifications for helipads from the point of view of safety.
The policy directs that helipads be set up on school or police training grounds, and the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation’s industrial areas. Once such places are identified, the helipads for flying VVIPs would not be allowed at any other place.
Fadnavis cleared the policy last week. Based on the guidelines outlined by the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), New Delhi, the policy has made rules related to helipads more stringent. This was done after it was found that in most of the incidents related to the CM’s chopper accidents, helipads, and their locations had been the major fault.
The policy also restricted the amount of baggage that can be carried on a VVIP chopper and clearly defined responsibilities at each level to ensure protocol and safety, while demarcating helipad sites in each of the 385 tehsils of Maharashtra.