History

Our history from the beginning

Below you will find the story of Heli Austria and Heli Tirol GmbH

  • The company Knaus Helicopter GmbH was founded under the name Ritter Trade & Aviation Consulting.
  • Johann Knaus flies Pope John Paul II around Austria and becomes known in Austria as the "Pope-pilot".
  • Start of flight operations with a Hughes 530 F under the concession of Niki Lauda.
  • Acquisition of the our first helicopter: a Hughes 500 D registration OE-KXO
  • Due to the very good times, the fleet of helicopters is expanded to 3 Hughes 500D's.
  • Entry into the next higher helicopter weight class is achieved, with the buying of an Alouette III
  • From March 1992, the company Knaus Helicopter GmbH becomes 100% owned by the Knaus family.
  • Johann Knaus crashes on 21 April 1992 with the Hughes 500D Helicopter OE-KXK due to a technical defect in Pfarrwerfen. Johann Knaus is critically injured.
  • This is followed by many weeks of trepidation for his life. Knaus Helicopter GmbH persists through the cohesion of the family, employees, friends, business partners and thanks to the loyalty of many customers! What anyone would hardly have thought possible, happens - 2 years later Johann Knaus returns to the cockpit!
  • Roy Knaus becomes the youngest commercial pilot Austria at age 18.
  • Purchase Helicopter MD 520 Notar - the first low-noise Helicopter in Austria.
  • Roy Knaus takes over 76% of Knaus Helicopter GmbH.
  • A tragic day for Knaus Helicopter GmbH: Johann Knaus crashes Nov. 17, 1997 at Ellmautal in Großarl in an Alouette III helicopter due to technical defect, and dies. His son Philipp suffers serious injury.
  • Despite this great tragedy, marked by his great love of flying, Roy Knaus decides to carry on the family business and becomes the sole owner of Knaus Helicopter.
  • Large expansion of the company starts - 4 new helicopters purchased: 2 Lama SA 315 B's, a Bell 407, an AB 212
  • Entry into Air Rescue
  • From the winter of 2000/2001 is an emergency medical helicopter permanently stationed at Heliport St. Johann / Pg
  • July: the Company relocated to the Heliport St. Johann / Pg.
  • The purchase of an AS 350 B3 Helicopter in September 2001 by Thomas Muster - this is the first helicopter of this type in Austria.
  • The start of flight operations using a Bell 205B Super helicopter - the only helicopter of this type in Europe - worldwide there are only 4 Bell 205B's.
  • December: Air Rescue operations is started in Tirol based at Karres by Imst, with a Twin Ecureuil 355 F2 "Plus".
  • From now on, throughout the entire year, is an emergency medical helicopter available from Karres / Imstein.
  • In spring, the construction of our own heliport in Karres / Imst begins - which is completed in December of the same year.
  • July: the helicopter fleet is complemented by a Bell 205 Super A-1, and in December by 3 additional AS 355 F1 / F2 "Plus's".
  • 7 June: opening of an additional full-year rescue Base (Martin 3) in Ebensee / Upper Austria. with an AS 355N
  • July: the commissioning of another MD900
  • In the winter season of 2004/2005, Martin 6 - a full-year rescue Base in Saalbach/Hinterglemm is opened and made operational with an MD Explorer rescue helicopter.
  • December: the beginning of the Air Rescue in Hochgurgl with Martin. 8
  • Entry of Mag. (FH) Saskia Knaus (formerly: Pechtl) as authorized signatory.
  • April: the change of the company name from Knaus Helicopter GmbH to Heli Austria GmbH
  • June: Heli Tirol GmbH is established.
  • June: 3 AS355 Camera Mount flights for the European Football Championship in Austria and Switzerland.
  • October: the last flight of the SA315B Lama OE-XCM.
  • December: the beginning of the Air Rescue in Matrei with Martin. 4
  • In winter 2008/09, use of the NEW Heliport Hochgurgl begins.
  • From June a Bell 206 (OE-XMD) Helicopter was used in flight operations in the Dolomites for Heli Austria GmbH.
  • August: the establishing of Ländle Heli GmbH.
  • January: the use of the AS355 as an air ambulance is forbidden - lt ACG BTH A-001 V 28.12.2009...
  • March: resumption of Air Rescue Martin 1 and Martin 2 with chartered MD902's.
  • As of November, using the AS355 in the Air Rescue is made possible again!
  • December: resumption of Air Rescue in Ennspongau with Martin 10th
  • New Air Rescue regulations in the province of Salzburg - contract with ÖRK started in January.
  • From March to December: large construction site in Ischgl Piz Val Gronda.
  • Wedding of Mag. Saskia & Roy Knaus in May.
  • On August 18, the beginning of building of the New Heliport St. Johann / Pg.
  • September: the birth of Roy Joseph Knaus.
  • October: the final decision against the Republic of Austria, because of unauthorized Groundings of the AS 355 as the air ambulance on 1.1.2010.
  • December: the beginning of the Air Rescue in Mayrhofen with Martin. 7
  • August: completion of the new heliport in St. Johann im Pongau

You have further questions? Send your questions via e-mail to the team of Heli Austria or Heli Tirol Also take a look at our online shop where you can see different products from our product line.