Posted on January 14, 2014 12:15 PM   |   Permanent Link   

Dublin Bay North Labour TD and Oireachtas Transport Committee member, Sean Kenny, has welcomed the arrival of the Coast Guard's new state-of-the-art S92 search & rescue helicopter for the Dublin region.

"This is the fourth and final of the new Sikorsky S92 helicopters to enter into operation for the Coast Guard, and means the entire fleet has now been upgraded. It replaces the old Sikorsky S61 helicopters which were in operation recently at Coast Guard bases in Dublin, Shannon, Sligo and Waterford."

"I welcome the fact the Irish Coast Guard now has one of the most modern and effective helicopter fleets in the world. The S92 is designed specially for search and rescue operations, is faster and safer, can carry more people who need help, and can fly at higher altitude and in much worse weather. The new helicopters also allow the Coast Guard to expand its role in providing emergency medical transport for the HSE. All in all, it is a seriously impressive aircraft and significant improvement over the venerable old S61 type which has been a familiar sight in Irish skies for so long."

"The new helicopters come into service after what has been one of the busiest years ever for the Coast Guard, responding to over 2,000 incidents. A well-equipped and well-resourced Coast Guard can represent the difference between life and death for anyone in trouble on land or in water."

"I want to pay tribute to the dedicated helicopter crews who work tirelessly to rescue lives all year round. It wouldn't be possible to provide the same level of emergency response without the volunteers who work locally across the Dublin region and across the country also - they do such great work, often risking their own lives to save others. The Government will be making the highest ever allocation of €67.9 million for the Coast Guard across the country in 2014 to finance the provision of critical search & rescue services."