First Indian Coast Guard Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) MK III Squadron Launched
In a major boost to India’s maritime security, 830 Sqn (CG), the first Indian Coast Guard Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) MK IIIsquadronhas been commissioned by Director General VS Pathania, PTM, TM, Director General Indian Coast Guard at ICG Air Enclave, Bhubaneshwar on 10 Apr 22. The occasion was in presence of various civil and military dignitaries based at Bhubaneshwar and adjoining Region.
The commissioning of this squadron earmarks a tremendous leap towards self-reliance in the field of SAR and long range maritimesurveillance, in line with government’s push towards “Aatmanirbhar Bharat”. ALH MK III helicopters feature array of state of art sensors, which add up to maritime prowess of Indian Coast Guard at sea.
These helicopters have powerful Shakti engines, full glass cockpit, high-intensity searchlight, traffic alert and collision avoidance system, advanced communication systems, automatic identification system, search-and-rescue homer and automatic flight control system and is fitted with modern surveillance radar/ electro-optical equipment, which enables them to undertake the role of long range maritime reconnaissance, in addition to providing long range search and rescue, both by day and night.
The Helicopter is provided with a heavy machine gun to undertake constabulary missions at sea and also a removable Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) to facilitate critically ill patients during MEDEVAC.
Out of 16 ALH MK-III aircrafts,12 have been inducted in the Indian Coast Guard in a phased manner and 04 of these aircrafts are positioned at Bhubaneswar, covering the entire coast of West Bengal and Orissa under their surveillance efforts.
Since induction the squadron has flown over 1200hours and conducted numerous operational missions namelyMEDEVAC of servicepersonnel from CG afloat platform, afloat confirmatory trials, day/ night ship helicopter operating limitations (SHOL) trialson board OPV class of ships, trial landings at dispersed helipads of Odisha and West Bengal region.