Victoria Police order three AW139s
Australia’s Victoria Police Air Wing service has added three Leonardo AW139s to its fleet.
They will be supplied by local seller StarFlight Victoria and used for law-enforcement, patrol and surveillance, and maritime search-and-rescue missions.
Leonardo expects to deliver the helicopters from its Vergiate final-assembly plant in Italy in late-2019 – ready for entry into service in 2020. The AW139s will fly out of Essendon airport on behalf of the Victoria Police Air Wing.
The AW139s have been outfitted with an advanced mission console, camera, wire cutters and rescue hoist for policing operations across the state. There are already more than 120 Leonardo helicopters in civil, public utility and military roles across Australia and has become the new aircraft of choice for EMS operations in Australia.
Australia is the biggest helicopter market in the Asia-Pacific region, with approximately 873 civil helicopters across the country according to Asian Sky Group’s fourth-quarter fleet report for 2018. The country’s helicopter fleet has grown year-on-year since 2015.
The country is also seen as one of the few hot spots in the depressed oil-and-gas market. Whilst the number of emerging offshore oil and gas contracts is far from substantial at present, most of the recent contracts have come out of Australia – including the recent Babcock five-year Santos contract.