Amid lots of fanfare, MD Helicopters held a ceremony on 3rd January 2014 to officially hand over twelve MD530F and two MD Explorers to the Kurdistan Regional Government. All fourteen aircraft were presented carrying FAA “N” registrations. The twelve MD530F aircraft are painted in either a red or a blue scheme, and all carry POLICE titles. All of these show on the FAA register as built in 2013 as we would expect.
The two Explorers were not new build aircraft as everyone had assumed from the press releases. The two aircraft at the presentation were N910MD and N4060Y. The FAA pages for these registrations show each were manufactured in 2009 – see below. Close analysis of the MD press releases regarding the sale are indeed carefully worded.
The MD530F release says “announced that the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has placed orders for 12 new MD 530F helicopters”
The Explorer release says “announced new orders from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) for two MD 902 Explorer helicopters”
And just to be sure, the two Explorers are as follows. N910MD was shown at Heli-Expo 2013 in a stars and stripes livery, while N4060Y was the demonstrator used at Heli-Expo back in 2011.
Moral – Be careful as you read press releases!
Jeremy Parkin – HeliHub.com
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