Trinidad and Tobago Orders Four AW139 Helicopters

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Trinidad and Tobago Orders Four AW139 Helicopters

Unread post by bimjim » Sat Aug 01, 2009

Trinidad and Tobago Orders Four AW139 Helicopters

12:58 GMT, July 31, 2009 AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is pleased to announce that the government of Trinidad and Tobago has signed a contract to purchase four AW139 medium twin turbine helicopters. Trinidad and Tobago's Air Guard (TTAG) will establish a dedicated unit to use these helicopters for search and rescue, surface surveillance, law enforcement, drug interdiction and disaster relief operations. The contract also includes an extensive training and logistical support service for the first five years. The contract, comprising the aircraft and support package, is valued at US$348 million.

A consortium involving AgustaWestland, Bristow Caribbean, FB Heliservices of UK and Helidex of USA will be established to manage the AW139 programme in Trinidad and Tobago with training services to be supplied in Italy, the UK and the USA. Operations will primarily take place from Piarco International Airport and from offshore patrol vessels, working in conjunction with the Coast Guard.

This order marks the establishment of the first Search and Rescue helicopter unit in the country.

Giuseppe Orsi, Chief Executive Officer, AgustaWestland said “We are delighted that the Trinidad and Tobago has selected the AW139 to meet its search and rescue and homeland security requirements. This purchase demonstrates the continued success of the AW139 platform worldwide and in the Central America and Caribbean markets where we see good business opportunities in the future”.

The TTAG joins a number of AW139 operators worldwide including the Spanish Marine Safety Agency, the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency, the Italian Coast Guard, the Japanese Coast Guard, the Korean Coast Guard and the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency in selecting the AW139 for their SAR missions.

The AW139 is the best selling medium twin-engine helicopter in the world. To date, almost 440 orders for this helicopter have been placed by nearly 120 customers in more than 40 countries for a wide variety of applications including EMS/SAR, law enforcement, offshore transport, VIP/corporate transport, fire fighting, utility and other commercial and government roles.

The state-of-the-art AW139 is designed with inherent multi-role capability and flexibility of operation. It offers unmatched performance and safety levels as well as the largest cabin in its class. Large sliding doors enable quick and easy access for fast rope activities. With a maximum cruise speed of 165 kts (306 km/h), a maximum range of 573 nm (1061 km) and over 5 hours endurance, the AW139 helicopter offers best-in-class mission capability.

Cutting-edge mission-dedicated technology and equipment and outstanding performance features enable the AW139 to accomplish the most demanding operations in the harshest weather and environmental conditions.

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Re: Trinidad and Tobago Orders Four AW139 Helicopters

Unread post by bimjim » Sun Aug 02, 2009 ... r-contract

Govt awards $2b helicopter contract
Published: 2 Aug 2009

AW139 helicopter

The Government has awarded a contract worth more than $2.1 billion to a subsidiary of an Italian company to supply four helicopters for use by the country’s Air Guard, Web sites and wire services have reported. The contract to AgustaWestland, described as an Anglo-Italian helicopter company, is worth US$348 million (TT$2.1 billion) and will see the Air Guard receiving four AW139 helicopters, starting next year. The contract includes extensive training and logistical support service for five years, according to a Dow Jones news wire report on Friday. The T&T Guardian understands that an AW139 helicopter can retail for up to US$25 million each, according to the fittings and specifications. This means that the training and logistical support aspect of the contract could amount to as much as US$248 million. The Guardian was unable to determine what procurement process was used to acquire the helicopters.

The Air Guard (TTAG) will establish a dedicated unit to use these helicopters for search and rescue, surface surveillance, law enforcement, drug interdiction and disaster relief operations. The AW139 is reported to be the best selling medium twin-engined helicopter in the world. To date, almost 440 orders for this helicopter have been placed by nearly 120 customers, in more than 40 countries, for a wide variety of applications, including EMS/SAR (Emergency Medical Service/ Search and Rescue), law enforcement, offshore transport, VIP/corporate transport, fire-fighting, utility and other commercial and government roles. The twin-engined helicopter was originally designed and developed jointly by Agusta and Bell Helicopters and marketed as the Agusta-Bell AB139. But Bell withdrew from the project, which was then renamed the AW139. The helicopter can seat up to 15 passengers. AgustaWestland is a subsidiary of the Italian defence and aerospace company inmeccanica.

Acquisition of the four helicopters is part of a strategy, first outlined in the 2003 budget speech by Prime Minister Patrick Manning, to upgrade the country’s national security capacity. The upgrade consists of three offshore patrol vessels—being built in English shipyards, six Australian fast-patrol craft interceptors and four helicopters. The British shipbuilding firm, VT Group, was awarded a £150 million contract to build and maintain three offshore patrol boats for the Trinidad and Tobago Government. Acquisition of the military assets was aimed at stepping up the detection, deterrence and seizure of illegal drugs entering the region, to ensure the management of the Exclusive Economic Zone and to enforce maritime laws.

Submitted by Fensic on 2 August 2009 - 12:02am.

Good job Guardian (yeah I say 'good job'), on reporting this. I saw the story online and wondered if it would be picked up by the local media.

Submitted by captain_walker on 2 August 2009 - 11:30am.

I have to wonder..really. This 2 billion going to bring what benefits? Like reduction in crime rate, drug trafficking, murders - ah mean what we supposed to expect?

The country's health and education systems in the dog house - and dey spending on helicopta? How about a li'le 2Billion for dee health sector. And while dey at it how about anodda 2 Billion for dee ailing corrupt Police force. Leh we get some decent doctors een from America and England nah - and leh we get some real police detectives wuking dong here man.

Ah could tell yuh now - dem helicopta going to transport ministers rong dee Caribbean. Dis could well be a substitute or part substitute for dee Private Jet. Watch!

Submitted by Allan Joseph on 2 August 2009 - 12:51am.

Are there any kickbacks????
Knowing how this government is operating, it would be interesting to know who negotiated the deal and whether there is either a middle man (or several middle men)or whether there are any kickbacks into a foreign bank account.
Ramesh and Jack, do your home work and try to get to the bottom of this.

Submitted by ryan4party on 2 August 2009 - 12:58am.

This is not kick back this is when they robbing us in we face, Manning you are mad. ... model=206L...

The cost about 1 million USD, so what the 2 billion for?

Submitted by marcopolo on 2 August 2009 - 5:08am.

I work alongside the industry. These things certainly aren't cheap, so don't knock it yet. If you wanna pay peanuts for this sort of equipment believe me.. you're gonna get peanuts. The package may include maintainence costs, customisation of the aircraft for the requirements of the Air Guard, training of personnel,costs for shipment etc etc etc...

Submitted by marcopolo on 2 August 2009 - 5:14am.

FYI ... four-aw139...

Submitted by Gershwin on 2 August 2009 - 7:30am.

Boy you and this clown nameed Allan Joseph really clutching at straws!

Submitted by ryan4party on 2 August 2009 - 12:51pm.

Well the way I see it you can buy 4 four AW139 helicopters for 2 billion, or get 20 helicopters (Varity of models) for the same, I would rather have 20, but I see they need them to fly to Manning around the Caribbean, I guess no Jet, but we will get some expensive helicopters.

All over the world the media uses low cost helicopters to do their jobs daily, I don’t see them buying AW139.

So y not get 1 AW139 for Manning and the rest in other models and types, so we can have more aircraft and give more support to the Police.

Just like every time the government want to buy something, lets buy some blimps, some ferries, only in Trinidad, In the USA the police do not use these high price helicopters, look at the ones used by the broward county sheriff department.

But then Manning need VIP/Corporate Helicopters for the new UNION, he can`t have his people getting around on commercial carriers, or like his last trip to Venezuela, I guess he did not like the helicopter he used.

How much search and rescue is done in Trinidad and Tobago every year? Now I get it he going to fight the war on drug using them, make no scene they are not outfitted with guns and are not for those types of applications.

Submitted by Zonkey on 2 August 2009 - 9:13am.

From someone directly involved in national security worldwide, this stinks to high heavens of BRIBES!!!! The maintenance cost alone will shock the hell out of them every year. Instead of depending on advice from experienced proffesionals like Elvin Withers, Brent Ferreira, Nick Nothnagel and Milton Kirton some bereaucratic idiot in the Ministry of National Insecurity goes off on his own (with advice from his friendly pocketicians). I am quite sure the conversation started off with "I have a partner that sells helicopters for a living".

This country sickens me to my stomach on a daily basis.

Submitted by trini2dbone on 2 August 2009 - 1:30pm.

Its Elvin Weithers, and the people who are incharge, are the people who thought elvin to fly!

Submitted by Nicholas on 2 August 2009 - 5:22am.

The granting of such large contracts should be transparent. Local representatives will always make money but it should be a fair reflection of what they bring to the table. It must not be because of friends in government. Let's hope this was not the case here.

Submitted by don1 on 2 August 2009 - 7:27am.

Mr. Ryan, you posted a link to a 1987 helicopter that isnt even the same model number (or year) as the ones the Govt are purchasing. Bear in mind when purchasing these sort of vehicles (whether it's a ship, plane or helo) they are usually built/modified to the buyers' specifications and this adds to the cost. The AW139s – are fitted with high-speed dual hoists as well as:

* Thermal imaging and high-definition low light sensors
* Direction finding equipment
* Maritime Automated Identification System (AIS)
* Powerful searchlight
* Satellite communications with flight following
* Paramedic advanced medical equipment

The radius of action for the AW139 is in excess of 200nm.
Throw in the five year service contract and yes it can be expensive.

However, this newly formed air unit (together with the new boats) can be very useful in combating the illegal shipment of drugs,guns and people (sex traffickers?)into Trinidad. I can understand being concerned about the transparency of the purchase but why must we continue to criticize everything the Govt attempts and then turn right around and say the Govt isnt doing anything or enough?

Don S. NY

Submitted by Nicholas on 2 August 2009 - 7:53am.

If we don't focus on the transparency issue, I agree with you and I do think it is a good idea. Apart from the search and rescue aspect, I guess the main aim would be in the inhibition of the drug trade (and accompanying guns) to the island. This should eventually lead to a reduction in the number of murders being committed. However, the population will always be skeptical until they see results.

Submitted by ryan4party on 2 August 2009 - 12:11pm.


The AW139’s world of refinement is matched by the highest standards in style and comfort. The spacious cabin provides flexibility for the most sophisticated requirements. The AW139’s baggage compartment, the largest in its class, can accommodate a wide range of cargo for business or personal flights. The AW139’s interior materials are the finest available in the world, selected not only to maintain their beauty and value, but to enhance the experience of flying.

The internal dimension of the large and unobstructed cabin of the AW139, makes it the best choice for primary and secondary EMS applications. The flat floor and ceiling provide maximum cabin flexibility for easy reconfiguration. An 8 m3 cabin volume and a height of 1,42 m allows the medical attendants easy access to casualties. Litter layout ranges from two to six in medevac configuration.

With excellent handling and outstanding OEI performance the AW139 is ideally suited to the harbour pilot shuttle role as well as other maritime support tasks.

The AW139 sets a new standard in the Law Enforcement "medium-twin" helicopter market by surpassing all others in this weight class in versatility, performance, productivity and comfort. Developed to exceed the rigorous standards of federal, state and local airborne law enforcement authorities, the AW139 Law Enforcement aircraft achieves this by utilizing the most efficient, proven and advanced technologies and design criteria to achieve a very cost-effective helicopter. The integrated avionic system provides the basis for managing the sensors and comprehensive communications suite required for the law enforcement role.

The AW139 is an ideal medium twin helicopter for the offshore transportation role, with its large cabin and baggage compartments allowing it to transport 12 or 15 passengers. The superior power of the installed engines, two P&W PT6C-67C ensures the AW139 has the best performance of its class in all conditions.

Search and Rescue crews will make good use of the AW139's greater cruise speed and higher useful load, while the aircraft's exceptional OEI capability will bring added confidence during rescues at sea. This aircraft's ability to reduce pilot workload and operate in even the harshest environments will ensure SAR crews achieve their missions safely.

I still will not buy 4 of these in Miami, the Coast Guard has 6 of these and they are used for mostly search and rescue, better manning get some Blackhawks with guns, it will cost him less.

Submitted by trini2dbone on 2 August 2009 - 8:57am.

AW/AB 139 Helicopter is currently the most advanced and demanded medium turbine engine helicopter in the world today. While I don't support Patrick when he goes on his spending tantrums, this is probably a worthwhile investment. In TT currently, there is predominantly the Bell 412/212, and the S76's in this medium range. The AW 139 is amazing and its ability to hover with only 1 engine operational is tremendous which the others cannot do. It comes fitted with a glass cockpit, and its power is magnanimous when compared to the Bells and Sikorsky's currently operating in TT. A few things that though, if it is for Search and Rescue, and Security, this aircraft comes with wheels, and unlike the Bell 412/212 with skid landing gear, this is confined to certain landing areas. It is fully air-conditioned, so no external vents are there, if the ac doesn't work, the aircraft don't fly, so a dependable avionics and electrical department is recommended. Its hovers very nose up, so night landings at unlit or confined areas will have to be done with caution. Once Patrick isn't going to use it to run himself and his circus clique up and down the Caribbean, it is a worthwhile investment. The only reason why Bell Helicopters dropped out of the production of this aircraft is because it is competing with one of its own aircraft, but in the US, ALL AW139 is still manufactured as AB 139. In terms of managing this operation in TT, they have the leading Helicopter Service Provider in the world managing this operation, with a Manager who is second to none, and know all about helicopter operations in TT and worldwide. PNM don’t screw this one up ok, just stay out of it, and let the professionals do their stuff.

Submitted by TriniJon on 2 August 2009 - 12:04pm.


They got boat and those Goast Gaurd drowing themself. Hope these guys don't jump off into the high sea and then try to perform search and rescue operation on their own. . . this is not funny. If they cannot operate effeciently in a boat. . . wonder what they will do with this HI-TECH. . . .AIR-CRAFT. oh still left to be seen. However, I think these guys should have some formal training or class room training before the purchase of the aircraft. Train on the old equipment before the GOVERMENT purchase new equipment and then spend a lot of time on training, maybe send these guy abroad to train and get famailar with different types of aircraft so they can be cretified then you can buy equipment. . . the US OR ROYAL AIR FORCE CAN TRAIN. . . .Oh please have anyone without a license brought a new brand HI-TECH automibile and then get some one to tutor you on your new auto. . how stupid . . well you guys on the go with info on the US President Obama remember his recent statement "DON'T DO ANYTHING STUPID" and for some people in T & T they got no idea about the dollars and CENTS they care about what make SENSE .the end product .THIS IS NO DOUBT A GOOD IDEA. . AND I SUPPORT IT. . . BUT PLEASE DO YOUR HOME WORK FIRST.. . . WITHOUT QUAFILIED PERSONNEL. . .ALL A FAILURE. BUT GOOD LUCK to T & T This might be chaos also the guys who train get big $$ and those who left to operate get peanuts. . .hope will not be another brain drain. . .< < < > > >

Submitted by MikeSamuel on 2 August 2009 - 11:36am.

Excellent!, I want the coast guard and the army to take out the dole chaddie clones in south from couple thousands ft in the air boom bye bye bara boys!

Submitted by Nicholas on 2 August 2009 - 12:47pm.

Stop watching everything from a race perspective. It will do you well!

Submitted by Zide Hosein on 2 August 2009 - 11:53am.

Mike Samuel, you racist idiot, it's the same "Bara boys" who will be flying the Helicopters, because there are no qualified "pork heads" to fly them.

Submitted by TriniJon on 2 August 2009 - 12:22pm.


There they go again you should not even reply to the pork head idiot, just by your reply you made yourself another idiot. . . Listen to this. . . "NEVER ARGUE WITH IDIOTS, THEY DRAG YOU DOWN TO THEIR LEVEL AND THEN THEY BEAT YOU WITH THEIR EXPERIENCE" go easy you know who you are. . .right. . right?

Submitted by MikeSamuel on 2 August 2009 - 12:11pm.

Submitted by Zide Hosein on 2 August 2009 - 11:53am.

Mike Samuel, you racist idiot, it's the same "Bara boys" who will be flying the Helicopters, because there are no qualified "pork heads" to fly them.



Submitted by hyperactive on 2 August 2009 - 12:23pm.

the pm motive... Now that the ressession is over and our belt is pretty loose,the spending frenzy could continue.

Submitted by MikeSamuel on 2 August 2009 - 12:26pm.

by BARA GUTS ryan4party on 2 August 2009 - 12:58am.

This is not kick back this is when they robbing us in we face, Manning you are mad. ... model=206L...

The cost about 1 million USD, so what the 2 billion for?



Submitted by terraxena on 2 August 2009 - 1:08pm.

so sad. a racist like you in T&T.

Submitted by ororke on 2 August 2009 - 1:15pm.

these things always go with commissions
and a middle man, ok, an agent.
it means someone is making a cool $40 mil out of it.
will the boondoggle blimp be retired?
is the radar still working?
are the hi tech pirogues still running?
why 4 helicopters?
will they all be based in the north?
or will it be one in la brea, one in galeota point, for drug interdiction, as they say.
will they be able to shoot go fast boats?
land in water?
will one of them be equipped with an executive style office?
pretty soon the tt sky will be filled with joyriders.
what about the good old cop on the beat. any leftover money to pay good men?
why not upgrade the phone system to help with real crime solving.
inquiring minds want to know.
i still want to know who ended up with the summit cars.

Submitted by trini2dbone on 2 August 2009 - 1:20pm.

Ryan4Party be quiet.....Listen, I am an Indo-Trinidadian, and a die hard UNC supporter. People give jack his jacket, this is a good move once Manning don't abuse these aircraft for his luxury purposes.
1. For the comment on training on an old aircraft and purchase a new one. Breads, you think they just putting people who never flew before, this is not a automobile driving class you know, there are people in place doing all the ground work. They will all be trained in the flight simulator in Italy, and all these pilots will already have thousands of hours on helicopters.
2. Stop turning everything into Panday and Manning.
3. Ryan4Party, you just showing over and over that you are as dotish, and uneducated as the hair on my big toe. You always bumping your gum on things you don’t know off. If you have nothing to say, just shut up, sounds familiar? Where the hell you will get an AW 139 aircraft for 1 million, Jack Warner selling you that?. YTEPP offering sign language, learn that, you dumb anyway.
4. I am as UNC as they come, again I stress that, and I am sure we will be keeping Manning in check on this one. Aviation cannot be manipulated by politicians, and certainly not dumb ones like the PNM, sometimes, when I here brain dead ryan4party aka jack guardian police, I does feel like hope is losttttttttttttt.

Submitted by ryan4party on 2 August 2009 - 2:35pm.

Brilliant, first off I don’t support UNC, PNM, COP or Jack, because they are all the same like you full of it, second look at develop nations and see what they are buying, in the usa the helicopter that manning is buying is mostly used in the corporate world, so now we have corporate police and search and rescue.

And boss I have a pilot license to fly single engine aircraft, registered in the state of Florida, so stop talking crap, the link I used was to show the cost of an average aircraft, now you still cannot justify spending 2 billion on 4 aircraft, don’t care what they say.

And for all your other talk, that is all it is talk! And that free, I never spoke about training? What are you talking about, like you high of the aircraft that manning buying.

you got to change your name to ***hole2bone.

Submitted by roshan hanief on 2 August 2009 - 1:22pm.

No wonder he started to talk about loosening the belt, he knew very well that the purchase of the helicopters would be revealed shortly.

Rik Hansel

Submitted by junction.cockroach on 2 August 2009 - 3:51pm.

is about time we get some more helicopters in this place, let us hope is not like manning blimp but will actually help the nation's peoples!


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