April 29, 2020
The Kodiak 100 is no stranger to performing humanitarian flights. Its original manufacturer, Quest Aircraft Co., specifically designed the short-takeoff-and-landing turboprop single to operate from unimproved runways, and the company even sold at cost every 11th aircraft built to relief organizations.
That spirit continues today as the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic. Recently, the planemaker – now known as Kodiak Aircraft and owned by France’s Daher – partnered with Percussionaire Corp. to airlift 240 emergency ventilators to Sacramento, CA, using a recently completed Kodiak Series II aircraft.
In addition to donating their respective services to make the flight happen, both Kodiak and Percussionaire are based in Sandpoint, ID, which made using the utility airplane a natural choice. On April 15 and 16, the still-unpainted aircraft flew the ventilators directly to Sacramento Executive Airport (SAC) from Sandpoint, saving valuable time over the less-direct routing of commercial air freight alternatives.
“These delivery flights also exemplified how Kodiak airplanes are regularly used in point-to-point dedicated air service, as well as between remote locations,” said Jason Eddy, Kodiak’s vice president of operations. “This is why the Kodiak was created and is invaluable in bringing communities together around the world.”
According to Percussionaire, its donated TXP 5 high-frequency percussive ventilators are based on the company’s portable ventilator originally deployed during the first Gulf War and now adapted for hospital use with COVID-19 patients.
“Daher has the same culture of helping people as Percussionaire, and we recognized the importance of making the airlift resources available for this life-saving equipment,” said Nicolas Chabbert, senior vice president of Daher Aircraft.