21-Jul-2010 Source: AgustaWestland
AgustaWestland is pleased to announce that Sasemar, the Spanish Marine Safety Agency, has placed an order for one more AW139 medium twin turbine engine helicopter. This aircraft will be used for a range of roles including SAR and water pollution detection. This order will bring Sasemarâ€™s fleet of AW139s up to eight.
The progressive expansion of Sasemar’s AW139 fleet has demonstrated the customer’s satisfaction with the most advanced search and rescue helicopter in its class and its ability to meet Sasemar’s operational requirements. The AW139 which features the latest SAR rotorcraft technologies hasÂ provided Sasemar with enhanced life saving and environmental protection capabilities. With the largest cabin capacity of any helicopter in its weight class and exceptional performance, the AW139 is ideally suited for SAR operations both over water and over land. Sasemarâ€™s AW139 will be equipped with a dual rescue hoist, Forward Looking Infra-Red (FLIR) camera, search/weather radar, emergency flotation system and a four-axis autopilot complete with SAR modes.
Sasemar is responsible for 8,000 km of the countryâ€™s coastline responding to thousands of emergency call-outs every year. Part of the Spanish Governmentâ€™s Ministry of Works, the organization began operations in 1993 and has an enormous geographical area to cover equivalent to three times the surface area of the country. Sasemar, with a fleet including 10 helicopters and 71 vessels, supports 21 maritime rescue co-ordination centres, including 10 helicopter bases.
Sasemarâ€™s relationship with AgustaWestland goes back to the first contract for three AW139s signed in January 2006. The organization was also one of the earliest customers to take delivery of an AW139 equipped for SAR missions paving the way to configurations later adopted by other leading SAR operators worldwide. Sasemarâ€™s AW139s are strategically located around Spainâ€™s main coastline and also on the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands. Sasemarâ€™s operations are benefiting from an increase in the typeâ€™s maximum gross weight to 6,800kg (15,000lb) increasing available fuel and in turn extending the aircraftâ€™s range by 100 nautical miles.
The AW139 has rapidly become the medium twin helicopter of choice for search and rescue missions around the world. It has been ordered or is now in service with a number of leading rescue operators in many countries including Spain, the UK, Italy, Estonia, Cyprus, Japan, South Korea, UAE and Malaysia. The AW139 has become the benchmark medium-twin helicopter and orders for over 460 helicopters have been placed by over 130 commercial and government customers in almost 50 countries to carry out a wide range of roles including search and rescue, emergency medical services, offshore transport, VIP/corporate transport, law enforcement, homeland security and military utility transport.