03/31/2011. Remarks by Jack McKillop: "The Bell 206L LongRanger is a stretched version of the Bell 206 JetRanger which increased seating from five to sevenand also increased fuel capacity. Deliveries began in October 1975.
On September 1, 1982, pilots H. Ross Perot, Jr. and Jay Coburn took off from Dallas, Texas in the 'Spirit of Texas', a Bell 206L-2 (N3911Z) and 29 days and 3 hours later, they returned on September 30, completing the first around the world helicopter flight. The 206L-3 version was introduced in January 1986 and featured a more powerful engine and double doors on the left side providing a 5 ft (1.5 m) opening.
N216TV was built in 1986 and is owned by a company in North Carolina and leased to TV station WBOC in Salisbury, Maryland. It is known locally as 'Chopper 16' (WBOC broadcasts on Channel 16). It is equipped with the latest high technology cameras and live equipment and the on board transmitter can send live pictures anywhere within a 50 mls (80 km) radius of the station's transmitting tower in Laurel, Delaware, 8.9 mls (14.3 km) north of the studio in Salisbury.
This helicopter has three cameras that are controlled by a photojournalist in the backseat. There are two 'lipstick' cameras, on the tail and the second in the cockpit, and the third camera is a gyro-stabilized FLIR camera with a 36:1 zoom lens and a 2x extender. It can shoot smooth, crystal-clear video from a mile (1.6 km) away."