Philippine helicopter crash: Canada-made Bell 419 was brand new

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Philippine helicopter crash

A police general is in critical condition, along with several other high ranking officers of the Philippine Government’s Philippine National Police (PNP), after their Canada-made Bell 419 GlobalRanger helicopter crashes in the Philippines. The Philippine helicopter crash injured seven PNP officers.




PNP GENERALS IN CRITICAL CONDITION AFTER PHILIPPINE HELICOPTER CRASH

The helicopter crashed on Thursday, March 5, 2020. It was en route to Calamba, when it crashed.

According to eyewitnesses, the helicopter kick up a lot of dust upon take off, reducing the pilots visibility. Witnesses say that the helicopter got caught on low-lying power cables, causing it to crash.

According to PNP spokesperson Major General Benigno Durana Jr., Major General Jose Maria Ramos, Director for Comptrollership for the PNP, is currently in the Intensive Care Unite (ICU) of the Unihealth Southwoods Hospital and Medical Center in Binan, Laguna.

The helicopter crashed in nearby San Pedro, almost 40 kms south of Manila.

Another passenger, Major General Mariel Magaway, Director for Intelligence for the PNP, is also in critical condition and is currently receiving care at the Asian Medical Center in Las Pinas City.

Durana said that the next 48 hours will be critical for both PNP generals.

Five other passengers are currently in stable condition at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig.




PHILIPPINE HELICOPTER CRASH, BRAND NEW CHOPPER COST MORE THAN PHP435 MILLION

The PNP purchased the helicopter from Bell Asia Pacific for PhP435 million. It was delivered on April 16, 2018.

The helicopter was a brand new aircraft purchased by the PNP for disaster response and humanitarian deployment.

Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, then PNP Director General, said that “the Bell 429 twin-engine rotary wing aircraft will greatly enhance the operational flexibility by providing air support to ground troops. This multi-role police helicopter is designed to perform a variety of air support missions.”

Bell Helicopter was awarded the contract in 2017.

The helicopter was purchased brand new by the PNP for PhP435 million from Bell Textron Inc., an American aerospace manufacturer based in Fort Worth, Texas.

While Bell manufactures military aircraft in the US., commercial helicopters, including the Bell 419 GlobalRanger purchased by the PNP, was built in Miracle, Québec in Canada.




SIMILAR HELICOPTER DEAL FOR AFP CANCELLED BY PRESIDENT DUTERTE

After the Government of Canada criticized the Philippine Government over human rights violations, President Rodrigo S. Duterte cancelled a similar deal for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The PNP purchase of the helicopter quietly pushed through, with representatives at the time citing that the Canadian aircraft company was actually based in the United States and not in Canada.




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