BAN's World GazetteerNorway
Bristow has taken delivery of two further S-92s in Norway. The aircraft arrived courtesy of an Antonov 124, one of the largest aircraft in the world.
To prepare for the movement of the aircraft, Bristow’s maintenance crew in Galliano, Louisiana, USA comp-leted all continuous airworthiness maintenance programme tasks on one of the S-92s and also ensured that the aircraft was updated with ADS-B and Sky connect systems. It was then moved to New Iberia in Louisiana, where hangar maintenance crew performed further modifications and painted it in Bristow livery.
“The coordination involved in this effort is a true testament to our employees and Bristow’s global collaboration,” says regional director Samantha Willenbacher. “A significant amount of work went into preparing these aircraft for operations in Norway. Even amid Louisiana flooding, the team worked tirelessly to ensure the helicopters were ready to be loaded so the Antonov could depart on time. James Kennedy and his team did an incredible job to support our global operations.”
With a secondary runway big enough to accommodate a space shuttle, Acadiana Regional airport in New Iberia is one of the few airports that has the capacity to handle an aircraft as big as the Antonov 124.
The Antonov has a wingspan of 240 feet and MTOW of 392 metric tons, which enables it to handle the 56 foot long S-92s, weighing in at 15,000 pounds each.
Bristow is also marking the first anniversary of SAR at its base in Lydd, UK, on behalf of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), from London Ashford airport. In the first 12 months of operations, 180 missions were performed.
Says chief pilot Neil Robertson: “It has been an enormous privilege to deliver such an important service over the past year and we look forward to delivering many more. It has been an incredible 12 months with some really challenging tasks. I’d like to thank the surrounding communities for making us feel so welcome.
“Many of the crew, myself included, spent a number of years here while serving in the RAF. It’s great to be home and we look forward to moving into our permanent base once it’s ready.”
Earlier this year the UK Department for Transport confirmed that Lydd would be the permanent base for the service in the south east. Plans are now underway to build a new SAR facility at the airport.
In 2013 Bristow won the UK Government national contract to deliver SAR operations on behalf of the MCA.