Le Havre-Fécamp Pilot Station and Airbus Helicopters have signed a contract for the acquisition of an H135 to be used for marine pilot transfers. By the end of 2024, the H135 will replace an AS365 N3 Dauphin helicopter that has been in service for more than 12 years. The agreement also includes a 10-year support and service contract covering spare parts, training, and logistics services.
"We are proud that the Le Havre-Fécamp Pilot Station has chosen the H135 for its marine pilot transfer missions," said Baudoin Marraud des Grottes, Head of Sales Western Europe at Airbus Helicopters. "The H135 has proven it's perfect for those missions with customers all over the world, especially thanks to Airbus Helicopters' Helionix avionics suite, which reduces pilot workload and increases safety during hoist operations."
"We are renewing our confidence in Airbus Helicopters, a long-standing partner of the Le Havre-Fécamp Pilot Station. From our first machine in 1976 to our sixth today, we are celebrating 47 years of fruitful collaboration between the two companies with the purchase of the H135,” said Pavel Pereira, President of the Le Havre-Fécamp Pilot Station. “Helicopters enable our marine pilots to board and disembark ships arriving at the ports of Le Havre, Antifer, and Fécamp, and contribute to the fulfillment of our public service missions throughout the year.”
Le Havre's decision to sign for an H135 will allow synergies with the ports of Dunkirk and Gironde, which also operate helicopters of the same type. Le Havre was the first port in the world to introduce helicopter services for marine pilot transfer in 1976 with the acquisition of an Alouette III.
Le Havre’s H135 will be equipped with an Emergency Floatation System & External Life Raft System (both certified up to Sea State 6), Helicopter Emergency Egress Lighting (HEEL), Automatic Deployable Emergency Locator Transmitter (ADELT) and a powerful hoist.
The light twin Airbus H135 incorporates the most advanced technologies available, including Airbus Helicopters' Helionix avionics suite, which, in addition to the 4-axis autopilot, offers an innovative cockpit layout to enhance situational awareness. Designed with three large electronic displays on the H135, the cockpit is night vision goggle compatible and includes a First Limit Indicator which highlights the appropriate engine instrument data for the pilot in one indicator.
In total, more than 1,400 H135 helicopters are in service with some 320 operators in 66 countries. The global fleet has accumulated more than 6.7 million flight hours.