North Carolina SHP unveils new Bell 429
The aircraft will enter regular operations in the coming weeks, and will provide support to the SHP and interagency operations
The North Carolina State Highway Patrol (SHP) unveiled a new Bell 429 at a ceremony in Raleigh on 25 April. The aircraft is expected to come into operation in the next few weeks, following the completion of necessary training and certification requirements.
The new aircraft will be completely operational in the coming weeks as patrol staff fulfil the necessary training and certification requirements.
According to data from helis.com, the helicopter joins an existing fleet of three Bell 407s – N404NC, N405NC and N407NC – making the new Bell 429 the largest rotorcraft operated by the SHP.
The SHP stated that while the aircraft will support a range of operations by its organization, ‘the majority of missions conducted each year continue to be in support of partner agencies’.
“Year after year, 80–85 per cent of our missions are for local agencies that need help in finding missing persons,” the North Carolina SHP added.
Kansas Highway Patrol’s (KHP) Aviation Unit is currently being investigated by the state government, due to allegations of pilots misusing state funds.