To strengthen the Coast Guard Region East, 840 Squadron, an Indian Coast Guard Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) Mk-III squadron has been commissioned by DG VS Pathania in Chennai, announced the Ministry of Defence.
The ALH Mk-III helicopters are manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). They feature state-of-the-art equipment such as advanced radar, electro optical sensors, Shakti engines, full glass cockpit, high-intensity search light, advanced communication systems, automatic identification systems, plus a search and rescue homer.
“This feature enables the helicopter to undertake maritime reconnaissance as well as carry out search and rescue at extended ranges while operating from ships, both by day and night," said the ministry.
The aircraft can adapt to different roles from an offensive platform with heavy machine guns to carrying a Medical Intensive Care Unit to facilitate the transfer of critically ill patients.
The ministry said: “A total of 16 ALH Mk-III aircraft have been inducted in the Indian Coast Guard in a phased manner and four of these aircraft are positioned in Chennai. Since induction, the squadron has flown over 430 hours and conducted numerous operational missions.”