Bristow St Athan Conducted First SAR Sortie
An AW139 SAR helicopter based at St Athan in Wales carried out the first operational mission. Bristow Helicopters commenced SAR helicopter operations on behalf of HM Coastguard October 4.
Bristow, October 05, 2015 - The new HM Coastguard search and rescue helicopter based at St Athan was sent to its first tasking within an hour of going live at the weekend.
Bristow Helicopters Ltd commenced SAR helicopter operations on behalf of HM Coastguard from the St Athan base on Sunday 4 October at 1pm.
Just 47 minutes later the first job came in, when the crew was sent to help a horse rider who had fallen in a forest in West Wales.
The winchman was lowered to the casualty through a gap in the trees and after the road ambulance arrived, they were moved to a nearby field where the aircraft had landed.
The casualty was then flown to Cardiff University Hospital.
Then, just a few hours later, a second mission came through from the UK Coastguard. At 5.30pm, the crew was asked to help search for a 20ft fishing boat that had run aground about three nautical miles from Swansea.
The crew located the boat on Pendine Sands using the aircraft’s infra-red system and the 80 year-old sailor on board was picked up in good health. He was flown to Pembrey Airfield where he was met by Burry Port Coastguard Rescue Team and members of his family.
Ferryside Independent Rescue Boat towed the vessel back to its mooring at Ferryside.
AgustaWestland AW139 G-CILN ( HM Coastguard )