New SAR fleet goes through its paces with Mountain Rescue teams

A new SAR heliopter demonstration for Mountain Rescue teams.

Mountain Rescue teams had their first look at the new fleet of helicopters that are set to take over from Moray-based Sea Kings from next week.

The fleet of new S92 Search and Rescue Helicopters will be based at Inverness Airport and are now fully up to speed to assume duties from the 202 Squadron detachment Sea Kings who will bow out of the Moray base on March 31.

Members of the Braemar rescue team were joined by Aberdeen Mountain Rescue colleagues on Saturday for their first close-up look at the new helicopters.

Braemar team member Malcolm MacIntyre said: “I have been with the team for 20 years now and I’ve always previously worked with the Sea King – so it has been very worthwhile getting to see the new aircraft.

“These new helicopters are very modern and there are some quite big differences between them and the Sea Kings – from the winches to the doors.”

Expertise gained by RAF and Navy crews will not be lost to the SAR service, with 202 Squadron’s Flight Sergeant Mark Lean telling insideMoray recently: “Some of us will remain in the service while a few will leave – but others will join the new civilian service at Inverness and other parts of the country.

“So there will be quite a bit of local knowledge going over to work for the civilian service so the long experience we have had as a military SAR will be taken forward into the future.”

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