New Sikorsky S-92A helicopters to improve capability of British forces on Falkland Islands
The helicopters were delivered to the Mount Pleasant Complex (MPC), the headquarters of BFSAI, and represent a significant upgrade from the previous Sikorsky S-61N platforms, which have filled the role of support helicopter in the Falklands for the past seven years on the current contract.
Brought into Mare Harbour by the Falkland Islands Resupply Ship, the helicopters will primarily provide a support helicopter capability through the logistical movement of people, spares and supplies around the island.
In mid-year, Bristow Group started using the Sikorsky S-92A for tasking, marking the start of the withdrawal of the S-61Ns, which a crucial capability to British forces. Both S-92s are now fully operational.
The introduction of the new Sikorsky helicopters will come with benefits to the MoD as the S-92A is equipped with more modern systems, is more reliable and can operate in poorer weather conditions than its predecessor.
Further improvements will be made by cross-training engineering staff to service and maintain both aircraft types and aligning shift patterns to allow efficient operations across the entire organisation.
Barry Paton, team leader of the Multi Helicopter Platforms delivery team at Defence Equipment and Services, said the new aircraft would provide ‘significant uplift in capability which will provide a sustained long-term capability in the Falkland Islands’.
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