Photo by Anthony Pecchi
Two Airbus Helicopters H175s are headed for Australia, intended for Babcock Australasia. The company said that once the Antonov AN-124 lands and unloads them, the helicopters would be Australia’s first H175s.
“Babcock’s investment in two brand new H175s is a first for Australia’s aviation industry and is evidence of our commitment to growing our mission critical capabilities,” said John Boag, managing director of Babcock Offshore Services Australasia. “Right across the globe, Babcock is trusted to deliver high-quality services that our clients expect, and we are delighted to be expanding our footprint in the region.”
Babcock said the super mediums cost $20 million each and would be operated on contract from Dili, Timor-Leste. The operator’s engineers plan to assemble the H175s at its hangar at Darwin International Airport in Australia. In collaboration with Airbus, Babcock has trained 27 pilots and engineers in assembly, flight and maintenance. Nineteen more Timorese are to be employed by Babcock, including four local engineers. They are to train with Airbus in France early next year.
Operations are slated to start Jan. 1, 2018. The contract covers personnel transportation, search and rescue support, and medevac in the Timor Sea.