22 July, 2015

Hovercrafters help feed hungry children

Yes, hovercraft are fun, but they also serve the greater good – and not just in rescue operations.

Organized by the Hoverclub of America, a group of hovercraft adventurers will come together on July 29 for a unique 500 mile Hover for Hunger journey up the Wabash River to raise funds and awareness for charities combating childhood hunger in Indiana.

One of the charities that the Wabash 500 Hover for Hunger will benefit is the food pantry of the Goshen Middle School. A similar program at South Vigo High School in Terre Haute will also benefit from the funds the hovercrafters raise.

These are kids that are identified by their teachers or counselors as being at-risk of going hungry when they go home over the weekend. Through the program, once per week the kids are sent home with enough nutritious food to supply them with weekend meals,” explains Dave Reyburn, Hoverclub President and organizer of the trip. “The food pantries are stocked entirely by donations from local churches, individuals, and grants when available.”

All participants are covering the costs of their trip, and 100% of the proceeds raised through donations will go to the charities. If you would like to make a donation to this worthy cause, click here and then click on the “Donate Now” button under the graphic. 

The participants will be flying hovercraft from a wide variety of manufacturers, including Neoteric. They’re coming from all over the United States to participate, and even from as far as Australia.

Their trip will cover the entire navigable portion of the Wabash River. The downriver trip has been done by boat, but never by hovercraft and never upriver. Reyburn explains, “This will be the first attempt ever to complete the entire journey by hovercraft in one go. The hovercraft is ideally suited for navigating the shallows, sand bars, rapids, log jams, buried debris, and low head dam and shoals found along the Wabash.

If you’d like to meet up in person with this amazing group of people, you can see their full travel agenda at the bottom of this page. They’re launching the trip at 8 a.m. Wednesday July 29 from Old Shawnee Town, Illinois 10 miles south of the confluence of the Ohio and Wabash Rivers, and ending it around 5 p.m. Sunday August 2 in Fort Recovery, Ohio.

“We hope to cover about 100 miles per day, stopping at many towns along the river to raise awareness and tell the story of our journey,” says Reyburn, “This is hovering with purpose.”

This is a great opportunity for you to “pay it forward”!

Your donation will help feed a hungry child …

10 July, 2015

Hovercraft: The Safest Flood Rescue Vehicle

Flooding has been a serious problem in the United States this year. The current threat is focused on the central states; hopefully it won’t reach the catastrophic proportions suffered by Texas and Oklahoma a few weeks ago. In May, Texas was deluged with 35 trillion gallons of rain, creating the deadliest national disaster in the U.S. this year.

This newscast describes the disaster and the role of Neoteric hovercraft in the massive rescue efforts …

As the Dallas police officer discovered when his patrol car was trapped by flood waters, vehicle drivers are the most common victims in flood emergencies. During the Texas floods, more than 500 water rescues were performed, and the majority of them were stranded motorists. At least 2,500 vehicles were abandoned when drivers had to seek higher ground.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that each year more deaths occur due to flooding than from any other thunderstorm-related hazard, and that more than half of all flood-related drownings happen when a vehicle is driven into hazardous water. It warns, “People underestimate the force and power of water. Many of the deaths occur in automobiles as they are swept downstream … A mere 6 inches of fast-moving water can knock over an adult. It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away a small car, while 2 feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles. It is NEVER safe to drive or walk into flood waters.

That’s why hovercraft are a critical rescue vehicle in flood and swiftwater rescue operations. And the Neoteric Rescue Hovertrek with its exclusive reverse thrust tops the maneuverability of other models. Flying 9 inches above the surface, the HoverTrek performs in shallow, debris-filled, fast-flowing water and allows rapid, up-close access to victims without forcing first responders to enter the water. In dangerous flood waters, there’s no better way to save lives – or to keep rescuers from becoming the rescued.

First responders: Now is the time for a demo. 
See what the HoverTrek can do for you, with a Text Flight or Training Course.

30 June, 2015

Canadian family to make history in their Neoteric hovercraft

Colin Steadman of Calgary has been flying hovercraft since 2008. Now he and his family are ready to make “a dream come true” in their Neoteric hovercraft, with two adventure trips that are far above and beyond your average lake or river cruise.

In their first adventure, Colin and his family (and maybe their dog!) will embark July 11 on a two-week, 1,200+ mile trip across the province of Alberta. “It’s never been done,” Colin told CTV News. “We’re looking to see parts of Alberta that no one’s ever seen on a vehicle that no one’s ever use before. Being able to fly through dinosaur territory on a hovercraft – no one’s ever done that.

The Steadman family with their Neoteric recreational hovercraft. Left to right: 12-yr-old twins Sage and Colton,
13-yr-old Cordel; wife Ingrid and Colin. 
This trip is a trial run for their ultimate adventure: In 2016, the Steadmans plan to make history with the first cross-country hovercraft tour of Canada, across more than 6,800 miles of waterways.

But this summer’s trip is not only a warm-up for 2016. Along their way this July, the family will be raising awareness and funds for Threads of Life, an organization that supports families who have lost loved ones in workplace accidents. The organization is closely tied to Colin’s employer, the Alberta Construction Safety Association.

As a certified pilot, Colin’s military hovercraft background is what first led him to hovercraft. He says, “A hovercraft really has all the characteristics of a helicopter and an airplane, but you can fly it on water, you can fly it on ice, snow, sand.”  Colin says he chose a Neoteric hovercraft because it’s the “BMW of hovercraft”. It comfortably fits his whole family and, unlike an older hovercraft he purchased, his HoverTrek is the only hovercraft on the market with reverse thrust. And, with the wisdom of an experienced pilot, he learned to fly his hovercraft at HovercraftTraining Centers.

Colin Steadman says his Neoteric HoverTrek is the “BMW of hovercraft.”
Colin has been planning these two trips for six years, and ten days from now the Steadmans’ dream will begin to come true. The kids will be responsible for navigation, fueling and cleaning the hovercraft, and they plan to take photos to create a book about their experience. The family plans to travel between four and six hours a day, rain or shine. “Only lightning could ground us,” Colin said.

Dreaming of an adventure of your own?

Launch your dream with a Test Flight or Training Course on a Neoteric hovercraft!

29 May, 2015

VIDEO: Neoteric Hovercraft Perform Texas Flood Rescues

After being hit with catastrophic storms this month, much of Texas – including Houston, the fourth-largest city in the U.S. - has been turned into a flood disaster zone. Massive search and rescue operations are ongoing, hindered by debris in the floodwaters and by continuing rain causing flash floods from already-swollen rivers.

The one positive note for this storm-battered state is that several Texas fire departments operate Neoteric rescue hovercraft, which are saving victims in areas that boats and other rescue vehicles can’t reach.

The CBS news video below shows one example. At 6:30 this morning in a suburb of Dallas, a woman became trapped on top of her submerged car when a nearby creek suddenly overflowed. Just fifteen minutes later, Wylie Fire-Rescue first responders rescued her in their Neoteric hovercraft before she suffered any injuries.

Here you can see for yourself how easily the Rescue HoverTrek operates in shallow, debris-filled water and has the unique maneuverability for up-close access to victims without forcing first responders to enter the water …


The newscasters immediately grasped the importance of hovercraft in flood rescue operations:
“A hovercraft is sometimes the easiest way for the rescuers to get to folks surrounded by these waters … You can’t go out in normal boats because you don’t know what kind of debris is out there … These hovercraft are just a much more effective way …”

Scores of people remain missing, and the death toll in Texas is likely to rise since more storms are expected to batter the state this weekend.  Tragically, the death toll includes first responders - and victims lost to failed rescue attempts by vehicles that can't perform as well as hovercraft in flood rescue operations. A firefighter in Claremore, Oklahoma lost his life when he drowned in muddy water while trying to rescue children, and another firefighter was injured in the same incident. One person died and three are missing in Houston after being swept away when a rescue boat capsized.

Extreme weather events such as this are becoming more and more common. We at Neoteric urge first responders to consider the value of a hovercraft for water, ice, mud and flood rescue operations. It's the most effective vehicle for fast, safe rescues, and it keeps your team above the danger – not in it.

See more Texas flood hovercraft rescues …