The new helicopters, acquired within the Chilean Navy’s “Gaviota Project,” will replace the in-service’s Bell 206 Jet Ranger (UH-57) platforms in service since the 1970s. They will increase naval aviation capability to perform a wide range of missions at sea and in mountainous area.
“Today is an extraordinary day, a very important day for the Navy due to the fact that it get these helicopters“, General Director of the Maritime Territory and Merchant Navy, Vice Admiral Ignacio Mardones, stressed for the occasion.
The remaining four rotorcraft will be delivered before 2023. According to the Chilean Navy, two more are expected in 2021, and the last ones in 2022.
A true multirole helicopter, the H125s are equipped to facilitate the widest range of Chilean Navy missions, including search and rescue (SAR), medical evacuation, maritime police, passenger transport, logistic support, among others.
The H125’s cockpit configuration is also ideal for conducting pilot training, allowing up to four students to sit in the same space, all of whom having visual access to the flight instruments.
“I want to thank the Chilean Navy for choosing the H125 and thereby reiterating our confidence in Airbus helicopters,” said Jérôme Ronssin, Airbus Helicopters Chile Managing Director.
“This has been an extremely difficult year, and this delivery is the result of hard teamwork and proof of Airbus’s strong commitment to the institution and to the fundamental missions it carries out for the country. I look forward to seeing the H125 in operations along the coast of Chile. “