The Bundeswehr has taken delivery of its fourth H145 in Search and Rescue (SAR) configuration in a handover at the Airbus Helicopters facility in Donauwörth, with the new aircraft accompanied by its predecessor, a Boeing UH-1D Huey, which was given a special paint job to mark the occasion.
The Bundeswehr’s SAR capability is to be maintained through the deployment of seven H145s, with only this type being used from April 2021, provided that all of the helicopters ordered have been delivered on schedule and crew training has been completed.
For the SAR role, the H145 has mission equipment including: infrared and thermal imaging sensors, a high-performance searchlight, a locator for emergency signals and a locator for mobile phones with a winch and stretchers available for rescuing people in addition to medical equipment for emergency medical care. With the new SAR helicopters, the Bundeswehr’s fleet of H145 helicopters will increase to 22 as 15 H145Ms have already been in service since 2017 supporting the special forces.
Deliveries for SAR equipped H145s, thus far ahead of schedule, began in December 2019 with Niederstetten, Holzdorf and Nörvenich selected as locations for the SAR mission with operations commencing first from Niederstetten.