A RNoAF Bell 412 SP during a earlier exercise in Stavanger (Image © Torbjørn Kjosvold / Forsvarets mediesenter)

Norway reduces airbase close to capital Oslo

A RNoAF Bell 412 SP during a earlier exercise in Stavanger (Image © Torbjørn Kjosvold / Forsvarets mediesenter)
A RNoAF Bell 412 SP during a earlier exercise in Stavanger (Image © Torbjørn Kjosvold / Forsvarets mediesenter)

The Royal Norwegian Air Force (RNoAF) has reduced Rygge Air Station, its active airbase close to the capital Oslo, to just a location with limited helicopter activities in the first week of August 2014. Rygge’s 137 Air Wing (137 Luftwing) has been decommissioned, but a handful of Bell 412 SPs and a pair of Westland Sea King Mk.43 SAR choppers will remain as well as about 150 personnel.

The Bells are Norway’s first line of air support for anti-terror and police units, 36 miles (58 km) south of the centre of Oslo. The choppers are essential, their squadron was one of the few military units being put on high alert during last month’s terror threat.

All Bell 412s will now be under direct command of the main RNoAF helicopter unit, 139 Luftwing based at Bardufoss in the far north of the Scandinavian country. The Sea Kings are spread throughout the country, they will be replaced by 16 AgustaWestland AW101s.

Norway’s small fleet of EWF airplanes, three Dassault Falcon DA-20s, already moved from Rygge to Gardermoen IAP last month. Rygge is also known as Oslo-Moss Airport serving civilian airline passengers.

© 2014 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger, with source information from Forsvaret

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