YVR-based Orca Airways has unveiled a newly refurbished Navajo Chieftain PA-21-350—the first in the company’s fleet to undergo extensive upgrades. The aircraft features new exterior paint design and original artwork by renowned Canadian First Nations artist and storyteller Roy Henry Vickers.
Orca Airways plans to standardize the Roy Henry Vickers design as part of a complete refurbishment of its fleet of more than 20 aircraft that includes Piper PA-31 Navajos and Beechcraft King Airs.
“I’ve flown with Orca Airways for many years and have enjoyed the attention to good service they provide,” said Vickers at the unveiling of the newly updated Navajo Chieftain. “Recently, I began to think of doing a design for the planes. The ocean, the orca dorsal fin and people were all components of the thought process that led to the design and artwork that I am honoured to have Orca Airways incorporating into its new look.”
A family-owned airline, Orca Airways began operations in July 2005, providing air service from YVR to Tofino Airport and operating one Piper Navajo on this route. The airline soon began expanding to provide daily scheduled flights between Vancouver and Vancouver Island, charter service, cargo service and Medivac services throughout North America.
In addition to the exterior makeover, Orca Airways’ upgrades will include interior makeovers and new avionics equipment.
“In addition to the truly beautiful exterior paint scheme, we are the first local carrier to have our passenger aircraft avionics systems upgraded to the Transport Canada TAWS (terrain avoidance) criteria, which will be mandated in 2014,” said Andrew Naysmith, president and CEO of Orca Airways.
For more information about Orca Airways’ destinations, visit flyorcaair.com.