Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company (NYSE: TXT) announced the sale of two Bell 412EPI and two Bell 407GX aircraft to Chongqing General Aviation Co., Ltd.
The signing marks the first Bell aircraft to be used in China for parapublic missions, including firefighting and search and rescue (SAR). The four aircraft are the first Bell Helicopters purchased by Chongqing General Aviation Co. Ltd., and will serve the Chongqing Fire Fighting Department. Helicopter SAR and firefighting operations are critical tools during natural disasters as the aircraft can access toppled buildings, blocked roads, fallen bridges and provide air assistance to rescue support on the ground.
“We are pleased to collaborate with Chongqing in their efforts to further their parapublic offerings,” said Chris Jaran, managing director for Bell Helicopter in China. “We are honored to know Chongqing has chosen Bell Helicopter to support the Fire Protection Bureau to further their capabilities in firefighting and search and rescue and believe they have chosen two outstanding aircraft to fulfill their mission requirements.”
Announced in 2013, the Bell 412EPI offers an optional 4-axis autopilot, allowing for hands-off automatic approaches. The spacious cabin provides ability to carry up to 13 officers, 6 patients for disaster management or more than 4,800 lbs (2,190 kg) of cargo load.
“The name Bell Helicopter is synonymous with quality, capability and support,” said Gong Wei, president, Chongqing Helicopter Investment Co., Ltd. and chairman of Chongqing General Aviation Co., Ltd. “We neededaircraft with capabilities above and beyond what our existing fleet offers, and we are certain Chongqing Fire Fighting Department will be eager to have these resources available for use.”
The Bell 407 GX’s reliability, speed and performance make it the ideal aircraft for a variety of aircraft missions. For SAR operations, quick and easy patient loading and unloading is available via a standard bi-fold door. The all-composite, four-bladed rotor system provides a smooth ride and excellent hover performance.
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