The Ecuadorian Air Force has received the first two of six H145 multi-role helicopters from Airbus Helicopters.
Ecuador is the first military customer in South America for the twin-engine helicopter. A total of six H145s will be delivered over the next year.
The helicopters, known as “Cobra” in the Ecuadorian Air Force, will be assigned to the 22nd Combat Wing in Guayaquil. They will support border surveillance missions and the fight against drug trafficking, in addition to carrying out rescue operations at high altitudes, medical evacuation (MedEvac) and assistance in the case of natural disasters. For these missions, the helicopters will be fitted with a cargo hook, rescue crane, stretchers, searchlight, and an electro-optical camera for reconnaissance.
“We are very happy to have new advanced technology equipment to help face our country’s operational challenges, where high performance helicopters are needed to fly in the Andes at up to 6,000 metres (20,000 feet), in the jungle or on the coast,” said Colonel Franck Cevallos, commander of the 22nd Wing of the Ecuadorian Air Force.
“Thanks to the installed mission equipment, it will be possible to move quickly from a rescue to a transport mission, reinforcing the air force’s response capacity for disaster relief and other missions in support of the public,” added Colonel Chiriboga, Head of Air Operations at the Ecuadorian Air Force.