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Swedish Helicopter Wing prepares for operations in Afghanistan

12th February 2010 - 14:30 by the Shephard News Team

The Swedish Helicopter Wing is now preparing for operations in Afghanistan

"It feels good, and overdue, but now we have a vital piece of the puzzle for us to make a good effort, "said Magnus Westerlund, Head of Swedish Air Force's Helicopter Wing.

The Swedish Helicopter Wing operation in Afghanistan is due to begin in April 2011, with the Lulea/Kallax-based 1.Hkpskv unit taking its Super Puma helicopters, known locally as the Hkp10D, with them.

"Preparations for the operation are already underway, and with that we also have the 10D helicopter operational which has improved the situation further, "said Magnus Westerlund.

The 10D helicopter will be used in Sweden for training, while the 10B aircraft are deployed to Afghanistan. The 10D is the same as the 10B except for some equipment which is specific to Afghanistan.

'This means that the crew can keep their skills even when they are at home between missions in Afghanistan. In addition, those who are on the way can better prepare. It is extremely important for us to be effective when we are on the ground in the area,' added Westerlund, pointing out that the 10D Super Puma also can be used nationall on community support missions such as in forest fires.

Source: Swedish Helicopter Wing / Swedish Armed Forces

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