Saudi Arabian operator THC (The Helicopter Company) will further expand its fleet of Leonardo AW139 helicopters to boost search and rescue (SAR), emergency medical services (EMS) and corporate transport in the country. At Heli-Expo 2023 (March 7-9) in Atlanta, Georgia, THC announced its willingness to enter negotiations to acquire an additional six helicopters for the existing fleet, along with options for an additional 20 helicopters. With the delivery of these latest AW139s, THC will have a total fleet of 49 AW139s which will perform a variety of missions in the country including emergency medical services, search and rescue and corporate transport.
Gian Piero Cutillo, Managing Director of Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We are satisfied with the great confidence that an important operator like THC places in our technological and mission capabilities, further confirmed by this latest announcement of their fleet expansion plan. The AW139 is supporting their service capability growth program for key missions including SAR, EMS and corporate transport and we are proud to contribute support to the communities that will benefit.” The AW139, the most important helicopter program in the world since its certification in 2004 and the best-selling model in its category, has to date recorded orders for almost 1300 units, from more than 290 operators in over 80 countries, for all types of missions.The fleet of over 1130 units in service has surpassed the 3,6 million flight hours logged to date.This model has proven extremely successful in the Middle East with over 170 units sold across the region to perform a wide range of missions including corporate transport, services emergency medical, search and rescue, public order, offshore transport, government duties.
The AW139 offers exceptional capability, technology and safety to meet the stringent requirements of operators and maximize their effectiveness when performing complex missions. This model features state-of-the-art avionics with advanced navigation and anti-collision systems to increase operational awareness and reduce pilot workload. It is unrivaled in speed, power margins and overall performance and features the largest cab in its class with high modularity for rapid reconfiguration, plus the transmission's unique ability to continue operating smoothly for over 60 minutes even in the absence of lubricant for even greater reliability and safety. Over 1000 mission kits have been certified for the AW139 to date.