“When seconds count” in backcountry aviation: Daher delivers lifesaving defibrillators to remoteIdaho airfields with Kodiak 100s

Sandpoint, Idaho

Delivering the Daher-sponsored ZOLL 3 defibrillator to Cavanaugh Bay with the Kodiak 100 are: Nicolas Chabbert, Senior Vice President of Daher’s Aircraft Division (second from left); with David Schuck, Senior Advisor at Kodiak Aircraft (at left). They are joined by Sam Perez, organizer of the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project (at right); and Don McIntosh, District 1 Director for the Idaho Aviation Association.

Backcountry airfields are valuable resources for everything from outdoor adventures to serving agencies/organizations that protect the environment, and Daher is continuing its support for such remote sites with deliveries of critical care defibrillators across the state of Idaho using company-built Kodiak 100 aircraft.

In coordination with the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project, Daher provided two Kodiak 100s – along with pilots, fuel and logistics assistance – to deploy the automated external defibrillators (AEDs) at four airstrips, with one of these AED units sponsored by Daher.

Using the Kodiak’s exceptional short takeoff and landing (STOL) capabilities, the flights were performed to Cavanaugh Bay (66S) in northern Idaho, not far from Daher’s Kodiak production site at Sandpoint; to Big Creek (U60) and Johnson Creek (3U2) in the state’s central portion; and to Smiley Creek (U87) in south-central Idaho.

“At Daher, our philosophy is: ‘We support those who care for aviation,’ and the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project flights are a continuation of this commitment,” explained Nicolas Chabbert, the Senior Vice President of Daher’s Aircraft Division and CEO of Kodiak Aircraft, who piloted one of the defibrillator delivery missions.

Chabbert said this month’s flights are the perfect complement to Daher’s ongoing support of the Recreational Aviation Foundation, for which it recently utilized a Kodiak to airlift U.S. Forest Service personnel and equipment into two isolated grass strips in the mountains of southeastern Idaho.

Daher builds the Kodiak 100 and the new, larger Kodiak 900, at Sandpoint – with both of these aircraft versions proven in their multi-role capabilities that bring together STOL performance with a large cabin and significant payload capacity.

Sam Perez, the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project’s organizer, recognized Daher for its support with these Kodiak 100 flights. “The Idaho Aviation Association is exceptionally grateful for Daher’s generosity and support of our mission to install these lifesaving defibrillators in Idaho’s remote backcountry airstrips,” he said. “We could not have done so without the help of Daher and our many donors who helped pay for defibrillator units. Now, aviators and general aviation enthusiasts who use these remote airstrips will have a fighting chance should a cardiovascular event occur.”  

According to technical advisor Sam Sandifer, the project’s goal is to position AEDs at high-traffic remote airstrips by deploying ZOLL 3 units that communicate via Wi-Fi to display their operational status. In the future, the defibrillators are expected to broadcast their availability and status using flight planning applications. AEDs are acquired through donations to The Gem State Aviation Fund, a 501(c) (3) corporation that promotes aviation-related charitable and educational activities, primarily within the state of Idaho.

In addition to the Daher-sponsored defibrillator that was installed at Cavanaugh Bay during the Kodiak 100 deployment flights, the other AEDs delivered were donated by: Lynn and Shirley McCullough (owners of a Daher TBM 910) at Big Creek; Dr. Jon Berman (at Smiley Creek); and Rick Bosshardt (for Johnson Creek).

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Additional photos for Daher and the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project

Daher’s Kodiak 100 takes off from Johnson Creek to complete one of the company-sponsored defibrillator deployment flights in coordination with the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project.
Marcel LeBlanc, Kodiak Aircraft’s Vice President of Engineering and test pilot, prepares the Kodiak 100 for departure from Johnson Creek on one of Daher’s defibrillator deployment flights with the Backcountry Aviation Defibrillator Project.