Rega Swiss air rescue service orders 12 five-bladed H145s
Rega, the Swiss air rescue service has ordered an additional 12 five-bladed H145 helicopters to operate from its mountain bases. By 2026, the company plans to operate an all-Airbus fleet of 21 five-bladed H145s.
The latest order follows an initial contract for nine H145s, announced in March this year. The new helicopters will replace the current fleet of AW109SP helicopters.
Bruno Even, CEO, Airbus Helicopters said: “To effectively operate life-saving air rescue services in Switzerland, we understand that the ability to perform optimally at altitude is paramount.” One five-bladed H145 landed on the 7,000m Aconcagua mountain in Chile – a feat no other twin-engine helicopter has ever achieved, he added. “That is why we are especially proud that Rega has put its faith in the five-bladed H145 and decided to make it the only helicopter type in its fleet to perform such critical missions.”
The five-bladed H145s will be supplied with the latest navigation system, tailored to the operator’s needs, that will enhance the mission capabilities and the safety of operations. This consists of the Flight Management System GTN750 Xi by Garmin, which will integrate and control a multi-sensor system that provides highly accurate and reliable navigation capacities.
In the event of GPS signal loss, the helicopter can navigate using the Thales’ inertial navigation system. “This solution will further boost the navigation performance in low IFR [Instrument Flight Rules] conditions and allows the helicopter to be certified as navigation procedure RNP-AR 0.1, which is the most accurate navigation procedure in the helicopter environment,” according to the company.
The helicopter will also include a new hoist by Vincorion that is under certification on the five-bladed H145.
Ernst Kohler, CEO, Rega said: “By selecting the five-bladed H145, we are ensuring that Rega will continue being able to provide its patients with reliable and professional medical assistance by air for the next 15 years.”
His company operates 14 helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) stations in Switzerland. Last year, Rega crews carried out 14,330 missions, including transporting 471 Covid-19 patients.
The global fleet of Airbus H145 helicopters numbers more than 1,600 aircraft, which have logged over 7m flight hours. The H145 is powered by two Safran Arriel 2E engines and is equipped with full authority digital engine control (FADEC) and the Helionix digital avionics suite.
The aircraft has a particularly low acoustic footprint making the H145 the quietest helicopter in its class, while its CO2 emissions are the lowest amongst its competitors, claims the manufacturer.