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San Diego County Sheriff welcomes two helicopters
The new arrivals will allow San Diego County's first responders to meet the demands of their critical functions, the Bell 412EPX for fire fighting and the 407GXi for law enforcement missions.
The San Diego County Sheriff's Dept Bell 407GXi patrol helicopter.

Sheriff Kelly Martínez of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department presented two new helicopters to its Aerial Support to Regional Enforcement Agencies (ASTREA) base at Gillespie Field in El Cajon, California. The aviation unit has provided air support to the county and partner agencies since 1971, averaging nearly 6,000 missions per year to support patrols as well as fire and rescue calls throughout the region.

The helicopters, at a cost of $21m, are a regional asset, and will significantly improve the department's ability to respond to emergencies. Its latest fire helicopter is the Bell 412EPX, designed to operate in challenging environments and weather conditions typically encountered during firefighting missions. All deputy pilots will attend flight school and receive intensive training on its advanced characteristics before they can begin fighting fires at night. ASTREA's collaboration with CAL FIRE will continue with seven firefighters aboard the 412 during fire calls.

The patrol helicopter is a Bell 407GXi, dedicated to police operations day or night. The flight deck has precision navigation that allows pilots to accurately track and respond to incidents, and the helicopter's powerful engine speeds emergency response and patrol coverage crucial for law enforcement missions. It can be equipped with a water bucket to help with water drops.

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