Royal New Zealand Air Force, April 04, 2016 - The New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) NH90 helicopters have confirmed their ability to support a humanitarian aid operation on their first overseas mission in Fiji.
NH90 Detachment Commander Squadron Leader Ben Pryor said the medium utility helicopters have been providing a critical link between the main population centres and the outlying islands which were devastated by Tropical Cyclone Winston.
Almost 120 hours of relief missions have so far been flown by the NH90s.
“We’ve confirmed the speed, range and payload of the NH90 in supporting humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) operations by carrying large numbers of personnel and humanitarian supplies and projecting those into very remote locations,” SQNLDR Pryor said.
“What we’ve demonstrated here in Fiji is that the NH90s are a strong enabler for HADR operations,” NH90 captain Flight Lieutenant (FLTLT) Peter Familton said. “They have performed well with respect to both the tropical conditions and the austere environment. We’ve regularly operated to rough, unprepared landing zones such as beaches and undulating terrain without difficulty.”
Nice work 3 Sqn!