The German Federal Police has flown its fleet of Eurocopter EC135 helicopters more than 100,000 hours. The 41 twin-engine aircraft perform thousands of operations annually across Germany for law enforcement, home security and Helicopter Emergency Medical Services missions.
"The flight time logged by the German Federal Police marks a true milestone for the EC135," said Eurocopter executive vice-president of programmes Wolfgang Schoder. "With a current fleet of 41 EC135s, the German Federal Police is one of the largest parapublic operators of this aircraft in the world."
"The specific mission that achieved the 100,000th flight hour perfectly showcases the capabilities of the EC135," said Thomas Helbig, head of the German Federal Police Air Support Service.
"Carried out at night-time with NVGs [night-vision goggles] and a FLIR during a railway surveillance mission, the crew was able to detect the suspects in the very act and coordinate the pursuit, resulting in the successful arrest of the offenders."
The German government operates an all-Eurocopter fleet of more than 80 aircraft throughout its Federal Aviation department. The line-up includes the EC120 for training, the EC135 T2i for air ambulance and law enforcement missions, the EC155 B for light transportation and multi-role tasks and the AS332 L1 Super Puma for long distance and VIP transportation, surveillance, maritime missions and disaster relief in Germany and abroad.
"Today, police services in 56 countries operate more than 1,000 Eurocopter helicopters, including authorities in the US, Spain and Brazil," said Eurocopter.
Source: Flight International