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Russian Ka-32s quench the flames on the 67th floor
Russia's Emergencies Ministry has received the last of its five search and rescue Ka-32 helicopters some six months ahead of schedule.

Russia's Emergencies Ministry has received the last of its five search and rescue Ka-32 helicopters some six months ahead of schedule.

All five machines are fitted with medical modules produced by Kamov and were freshly certificated in June this year by Russia's health and social development service, and are also capable of having fire-fighting equipment fitted.

It is planned that the helicopters will be used for patrolling the main road between Moscow and St Petersburg as part of the ministry's road safety programme for Russia's federal highways. Nationally, the road safety scheme may eventually acquire 62 light and 123 medium helicopters.

On June 19th, Ka-32A and an Mi-26T aircraft belonging to the ministry and fitted with external water discharge units were instrumental in effectively and rapidly localising and extinguishing a large fire across an area of about 1,000 sq m in northern Moscow. Back in April Ka-32As and Mi-26T puts out a fire on the 66th and 67th floor of the Federation Tower of the Moscow International Business Centre, currently under construction. This will be the tallest building in Europe when finished.

Using other fire-fighting equipment was impossible at such a height, and helicopters proved to be the only effective way of tackling the fire on the upper floors of the building.

The Ka-32A11BC is a multi-role variant of the Ka-32A, the coaxial rotors of which have a number of advantages in hover accuracy and manoeuvrability, allowing it to perform complex installation and construction tasks. European certification was achieved in 2009.