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emergency services victoria

...victoria police air wing...


victoria police air wing


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Here are the new AS365N3 Dauphines, Air495 (POLAIR 33, VH-PVG) and Air 490 (POLAIR 30, VH-PVH)


Air 490 (VH-PVH) [PolAir 30] Primary Victoria Police Dauphine

Air 491 (VH-PVF)  [PolAir 31]  Former Primary Victoria Police Dauphine
Air 492 (VH-PVK) [PolAir 32] Stand By Victoria Police Dauphine
Air 495 (VH-PVG) [PolAir 33]  Primary Air Ambulance Dauphine

             (VH-PVA)                   Former Air Ambulance Dauphine - decommissioned
Air 474 (VH-PVM) [PolAir 34] Victoria Police Squirrel

To civilian pilots and air traffic controllers, PolAir 30 (VH-PVH) is the identification of the dedicated Victoria Police Dauphine Helicopter.  On the air with Intergraph it is known as Air 490.  PolAir 32 or Air 492 (VH-PVK) is the standby Dauphin.  PolAir 33 or Air 495 (VH-PVG) is the Dauphine Air Ambulance.  Air 495 is manned by the police air wing and Metropolitan Ambulance Service 24 hours a day. 

As well as the two Dauphine helicopters, the police also have a single engine "Squirrel".
It costs around $2000 an hour, excluding salaries of pilots and crew members, to keep the Dauphine twin engine in the air.  The Squirrel is marginally cheaper as it is a single engine chopper.

Members of the Victoria Police Airwing must have a minimum of 5-6 years as an operational member before being able to join the air wing and a position at the air wing is a highly sought after position.
Aircrews will usually work a 10 to 6 shift on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.  On Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays they work 10 to 6 with a 2 to 10 shift on Sundays.  These shift are designed to cover the peak periods for helicopter demand. 
If an emergency arises outside of these hours, the Air Ambulance will be used, but in the case of a medical emergency, it will be diverted to it as all ambulance tasks take priority.

Air 490/491 is now fitted with a FLIR -Forward Looking Infra Red- camera system which allows the observer to see everything at night time by showing objects relative to their heat output.  This FLIR is also equipped with a conventional colour camera for recording anything during the day. 

The Squirrel does not take part in general patrols but is available to members for specific tasking.  This chopper is primarily used in the country regions but its tasks are not just limited to drug crop searching.  It can also be used for jobs that can run over a period of days or for local schools and club demonstrations.

The air wing can be up in the air from Essendon is as little as two minutes and overhead most metropolitan areas within 5-6 minutes.  Though the Air Ambulance is mainly only used when their is a medical emergency, it can also be taken out for training purposes for the more specialized groups of the force, such as the Special Operations Group, Dog Squad and Search and Rescue.

The air wing can be heard on 131.6 Mhz AM as well as ANY other Police, Fire, Ambulance, SES, DNRE or aviation frequency they need to be on.  Some training is done on 123.1 and 123.2 Mhz AM but most is done on either 2 Local (467.875 Mhz UHF) or a VHF SMR channel.