New $2.6 million helicopter shines at Los Angeles Fire Department – ​​San Gabriel Valley Tribune

The City of Los Angeles Fire Department unveiled its latest helicopter, the Fire 7, a $2.6 million Bell 505 light helicopter at LAFD Fire Station 114 at Van Nuys Airport on Wednesday, March 29, 2023. The new helicopter is the second Bell 505 LAFD aircraft used for HLCO (helicopter coordinator) and observation during incidents, including wildfires and other emergencies requiring multiple aircraft. HLCO pilots are responsible for managing the airspace and flight communications for all responding aircraft. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)

On Wednesday, March 29, the Los Angeles Fire Department took possession of a $2.6 million Fire-7, a high-tech Bell 505 light helicopter that the LAFD will use for “helicopter coordination and observation” during incidents such as wildfires that require multiple aircraft. reply.

The new helicopter was unveiled at the LAFD Fire Station 114 at Van Nuys Airport, and is now the second Bell 505 that pilots will use to carefully manage airspace and flight communications for all responding aircraft, and to provide real-time analysis for incident commanders. .

“The new Fire-7 … will assume the leadership position for all command and control missions,” LAFD Capt. Erik Scott said. “Fire-7 will help modernize the LAFD fleet and significantly reduce the department’s reliance on two outdated models. It will provide … significant tactical and technological advantages to protect Los Angeles against wildfires and other emergencies for years to come.”

The department’s helicopter fleet consists of five medium-duty and two light-duty helicopters. The Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation made the purchase possible, according to fire officials, and consistently fills the gap with important equipment and training when there are enough funds in the department’s budget to do so.

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