Ukraine’s first repurposed H225M

One of the 21 H225Ms ordered by the Ukraine government, ‘53’ blue (M-ABKB, c/n 2744) is seen here after a ground engine test run at Albacete on December 18, 2018. It will be operated by the Ukraine State Rescue Service after having been converted from the EC225LP to H225M standard. The helicopter was previously in service with CHC Norway as LN-OJD.
Roberto Yáñez

AIRBUS HELICOPTERS has delivered the irst two H225s to the Ukrainian Ministry of Interior, out of an order for 21 aircraft. The two helicopters are repurposed EC225s, which have been converted to H225M standard by Airbus Helicopters at Albacete, Spain. The work was conducted in a little over three months and a further two H225s are expected to be delivered within weeks of the irst pair.

One helicopter will be used for search and rescue (SAR) operations with the Ukraine State Rescue Service and the other will be operated by the Ukraine National Guard for law enforcement missions.

The helicopters are the irst of a total of 55 helicopters to be delivered under the framework of an intergovernmental agreement contract signed between France and Ukraine in June 2018. The agreement covers the acquisition of 21 repurposed H225s, together with ten new build H145s and 24 H125s. All helicopters will be employed on SAR, emergency medical services and public service missions by a range of government agencies.

Arsen Avakov, Minister of Internal Afairs of Ukraine said: “Further to the intergovernmental agreement signed between Ukraine and France earlier this year, we are pleased to be celebrating the irst deliveries. This agreement for 55 helicopters enables Ukraine to provide its population with a complete range of helicopter services, from search and rescue, emergency medical services and ireighting to law enforcement missions.”

He added “Thanks to the excellent operational co-operation with Airbus, we will also set up a local training and maintenance centre in Ukraine to support our modernised leet of helicopters.”

Ukraine pilots have now completed their H225 training in France and speaking at the delivery ceremony in Kiev, Airbus Helicopters’ Executive Vice President for Support and Services, Matthieu Louvot, said: “One of the next steps is to accompany the Ministry of Interior in setting up the dedicated training and maintenance centre for the helicopters in Ukraine. Nigel Pittaway