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All posts for the day April 3rd, 2019

Reykjavik, 01 April 2019 – Airbus Helicopters is supporting the Icelandic Coast Guard (ICG) with the entry into service of two Airbus H225 heavy search and rescue (SAR) helicopters as the first step in a renewal of the agency’s helicopter fleet.

The aircraft are replacing two of the ICG’s three existing Airbus AS332L1 Super Pumas, the first of which entered service in 1995. They are being leased from Norwegian helicopter lessor Knut Axel Ugland Holding AS and will both be in service by the end of April 2019. The ICG plans to purchase permanent replacements for all three aircraft in its fleet by 2022.

Airbus Helicopters is providing pilot and technician training on key features of the H225 and ongoing maintenance and support under an HCare Smart Parts By the Hour contract.

The 11-tonne category, twin-engine H225 is the latest member of Airbus Helicopters’ Super Puma family with more powerful engines providing a smoother ride and enhanced performance compared to the AS332L1.

Equipped with state-of-the-art electronic instruments and a 4-axis autopilot system, the H225 offers outstanding endurance and fast cruise speed, and can be fitted with a wide range of SAR equipment. Operated by two pilots, it can be configured with up to 18 seats or six stretchers.

The H225 and military H225M are benchmarks in SAR and combat SAR and are operated by 20 nations worldwide.

Commander S.G. Sindri Steingrimsson, Director Flight Operations at the ICG said: “The experience with our current fleet of Super Pumas has been excellent through the years. Overall they have done a fantastic job for us here at the Icelandic Coast Guard, in some of the most challenging conditions for aircraft SAR operations in the world. We fully expect that the new Super Pumas will add great value to the safety and security of our operations, increasing capability and reliability while at the same time modernising our technological standards to meet current needs.”

PRESS RELEASE – LANGKAWI, 27th March – Weststar Aviation Services, a leading regional offshore helicopter transportation services provider, and Leonardo signed a contract – valued at around 50 million euros – for three new-generation AW169 and two AW139 helicopters for offshore operations in West Africa and the Middle East.

The contract signing ceremony was held today at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) in the presence of the Prime Minister of Malaysia, YAB Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. The three AW169s helicopters will be for Weststar’s ExxonMobil & Noble contract in Equatorial Guinea while the two AW139s are for the Al-Khafji Joint Operations contract in Saudi Arabia, which is a joint venture between Kuwait Gulf Oil Company (KGOC) and Aramco Gulf Operations. “This procurement further strengthens the partnership between Weststar Aviation Services and Leonardo and is a key factor in Weststar’s overseas business expansion. The AW169 and the AW139 twin-engine helicopters are the most successful new generation models in their class worldwide, and the most demanded helicopter types in the Oil and Gas industry. We are pleased to purchase yet more helicopters from Leonardo to support our offshore helicopter operations and we will use the newly purchased helicopters for our operations in West Africa and the Middle East.“ said Tan Sri Dr. Syed Azman Syed Ibrahim, Group Managing Director of The Weststar Group.

Gian Piero Cutillo, Managing Director of Leonardo Helicopters, said: “Weststar is one of our most important helicopter customers worldwide and we are happy to confirm our leading position in the offshore market in the region. There are now over 60 Leonardo helicopters in Malaysia, where we have our regional Customer Support and Training hub, and we plan to increase our presence even further in the future by expanding the services we offer.”

Since commencing its operations in 2003, Weststar Aviation Services has grown to become one of the global key players in the offshore helicopter industry. To date, Weststar Aviation Services operates a total of 33 AW139, AW169 and AW189 helicopters out of its bases in Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia.

The AW139 and AW169 are part of Leonardo’s Family of new generation helicopters that also includes the AW189. These models are ideal for passenger transport, EMS and SAR missions. Leonardo has a long-standing presence in Malaysia with a large fleet of helicopters – both commercial and military – defence, security and airport systems.