Lithuania introduces new SAR choppers

Lithuania on Thursday 14 January celebrated the entry into service of the new Airbus Helicopters AS365 N3+ helicopters for search and rescue (SAR) duties. The new choppers, three of which have been ordered, are available for duty 24/7.

The Baltic country ordered the helicopters are replacement for ageing, Soviet era Mil Mi-8 Hip helos. Following the first two deliveries in June and September 2015, air force pilots, rescue workers and technicians underwent a full training program, including the use of a full flight simulator. The final chopper arrived in-country last month.

The three AS365 N3+ SAR helicopters are fully equipped with the latest technologies such as forward looking infrared (FLIR), radar, search lights, hailer, hoist, and stretchers. The full glass cockpit and 4-axis autopilot with SAR modes significantly decrease the crew workload, allowing them to perform their demanding missions safely.

© 2016 editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: The new Lithuanian Air Force SAR Dauphin (Image © Airbus Helicopters)