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General aviation - In brief


Funding for London's Air Ambulance helicopter for the next seven years has been secured through a financing deal from Santander Corporate Banking. The charity, founded in 1988, operates London's only helicopter emergency medical service with the support of the Virgin Group. The air ambulance service - which consists of a twin-engined MD Helicopters MD902 Explorer and occasionally Eurocopter EC355 Twin Squirrels - performed 1,741 missions in 2009, 1,979 in 2010 and says it is approaching its 25,000th mission. An average of seven call-outs are made each day.


Eurocopter says it will create a new industrial facility in Querétaro, Mexico to support its global production network and augment its presence in the Latin America. The Mexican town, 200km (120 miles) north of Mexico City, is already home to Bombardier's Learjet 85 manufacturing site. Meanwhile, Eurocopter has sold five AS350 B3 helicopters to three Indian customers. Offshore transport provider Global Vectra has acquired three of the light single-engined types - bringing its AS350B fleet to seven - while charter operators Summit Aviation and SS Aviation each purchased one. All five AS350s are scheduled for delivery this year.

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