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Airbus Helicopters delivers final H145s to Ecuadorian Air Force

Airbus Helicopters delivered the final three H145 rotary-wing aircraft as part of an order to the Ecuadorian Air Force (Fuerza Aérea Ecuatoriana: FAE) on 12 December, according to a service statement.

Ecuador bought six H145s in 2019 to replace its retired Indian-built HAL Dhruv helicopter fleet and complement four AW119Ke helicopters acquired during the same year. The contract, aimed at enhancing Ecuador's vertical lift capabilities, included training for 12 pilots and 15 technicians as part of an in-country operational training programme.

This last batch of H145s were delivered to Simon Bolivar Air Base in Guayaquil. The H145 helicopters, known as “Cobra” in the FAE, are assigned to the 2211 Combat Squadron of the 22nd Combat Wing.

The H145s will be used in roles such as border surveillance, counter-narcotics, high-altitude search-and-rescue (SAR), medical evacuation, and disaster relief. The aircraft are equipped with a rescue hoist, fast roping system, searchlight, Ultraforce 350-HD electro-optical (EO) camera, advanced communication suite, and a Safran oxygen system. They also have provision to install a light armour protection kit and door mounts for machine guns.

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