Japan's MoD to acquire a Eurocopter EC225 for passenger transportation

Eurocopter Japan, a subsidiary of Eurocopter Group, will supply one EC225 to the Japan Ministry of Defense, to be operated by the Japanese ground self defense force for passenger transport. It is a replacement for the same helicopter model which was submerged during the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in March last year.

The Japan Ministry of Defense signed a contract on 8th March 2012 with Eurocopter to acquire an EC225, a heavy twin-engine helicopter from Eurocopter’s Super Puma family. It had a fleet of three EC225s, but one of which was submerged during the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. The procurement of the new 11-ton helicopter is meant as a replacement for the damaged aircraft.

Offering high cruise speed, long range coverage and high level of comfort thanks to the spacious cabin and low vibration, this aircraft is popularly used for passenger transportation and search and rescue missions all over the world.

Since the major earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on 11th March last year, various public sectors in Japan have been boosting their rotary-wing aircraft fleet, seeing the benefits of helicopters in times of large-scale disasters. Besides being able to carry out relief efforts safely and efficiently, helicopters also proved to be the fastest and safest mode of transport, as public transportation systems were badly affected.

“The strength of the EC225 was clearly demonstrated during the disaster relief efforts, which was very much appreciated by our customers,” said Stephane Ginoux, President & CEO of Eurocopter Japan. Recent procurements of this model by the Japan Coast Guard, Tokyo Fire Department, and now the Ministry of Defense, have given great recognition to the capability of the EC225. Eurocopter Japan will also continue to provide efficient services to ensure undisrupted operations for our customers.”

The EC225 for the Ministry of Defense will be delivered in February 2015.

Source: Eurocopter, an EADS N.V. company (Paris: EAD.PA)
Date: Mar 14, 2012