Volga-Dnepr, October 16, 2014 - On October 14, Volga-Dnepr Airlines transported Mi-8 helicopters for the latest United Nations (UN) emergency health mission in response to the Ebola virus outbreak.
The flight was operated using one of Volga-Dnepr’s An-124 ‘Ruslan’ freighters from Moscow, Russia, to Freetown, Sierra Leone.
The three multi-purpose helicopters will be used to support the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) established in late September to fight the outbreak of the virus in western Africa.
To load the helicopters into the cargo hold of the An-124, Volga-Dnepr applied a loading plan specially developed for the carriage of rotor-wing machines. This involves demounting lifting and tail propellers, vibration absorbers, fuel tanks, and removing fluids from the shock struts and wheels. This reduced the height of the helicopters enabling them to be loaded onboard the An-124 alongside the demounted equipment.
The Ebola virus has so far penetrated Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal and claimed more than 4,500 lives.
Many international organisations, including the UN, are providing financial and people resources to help stop the spread of the virus in the countries most affected by the Eboloa outbreak. UNMEER’s priority mission is to stop the epidemic, cure infected people, supply disease areas with all necessary medical services, stabilise the situation and prevent future outbreaks.