Monday 28th December 2015 - Air Corps Operations - 2015.

2015 has been a busy year for the Air Corps with Casement Aerodrome handling over 21,000 aircraft movements and the Air Corps’ fleet amassing over 8,850 flying hours.

Figures regarding the Air Corps’ operations in 2015 include:

  • 277 Maritime Patrols

  • 68 Air Ambulances on both helicopter & fixed wing assets
370+ Completed Emergency Aeromedical Service (EAS) Missions

  • 32 Wildlife Surveys

A number of high profile missions carried out this year include the visit of Prince Charles which saw the Air Corps deployed in multiple roles; Two (2) AW139 helicopters were tasked with providing security and transport for members of the joint delegation of Irish and UK officials while PC-9s deployed in an Air Policing role under the control of Air Corps Air Traffic Control staff enforcing an aviation exclusion zone.

2015 saw the completion of Operation Baseline, an Ordnance Survey project to accurately map Ireland’s coastline. The borders of coastal nations do not end at the water's edge but extend into offshore areas, where national law still applies. The extent of these territorial seas are defined in law as is the line from which this extent is measured. This line is known as a baseline and it is from this that rights to fishing, exploration and exploitation of natural resources are determined. The Air Corps supported this mission by providing access for Ordnance Survey personnel to the most extreme points of our coastline and by winching teams on to tiny promontories so that they could obtain their geological data to construct this national Baseline.

In March the CASA Maritime Patrol aircraft, while carrying out a routine patrol, provided a scientific research platform for physicists from Trinity College Dublin to study the total solar eclipse. The aircraft gave scientists an opportunity to use specialist cameras, free from obstructions and atmospheric pollutants, to record the event. The data gathered contributed to a global scientific study of the event.

In April an AW139 deployed to Killarney National Park to combat a wildfire. The aircraft was fitted with a 'bambi bucket' capable of carrying over 1000 litres of water in support of the local fire service.

The Emergency Aeromedical Service provided by the Air Corps and the National Ambulance Service, reached a significant milestone in June by completing its 1000th mission. The EAS has now completed over 1250 missions. Occasionally the Air Corps is tasked with providing support for the Irish Aviation Authority and the Air Accident Investigation Unit. This year the Air Corps was tasked on two occasions. In June there was a light aircraft crash in a mountainous area of South Carlow. The Air Corps was tasked initially with providing helicopter transport for the investigation teams.

Once preliminary investigations were carried out the Air Corps was requested to recover the aircraft from the mountain so further analysis could be carried out. This involved a large logistical operation with over 30 Air Corps personnel conducting a complex helicopter external load lift of the crashed aircraft off the mountain. In November, following a crash of a Russian Metrojet in the Sinai Peninsula, the Air Corps provided transport for the IAA/AAIU teams from Dublin to Egypt.

In December, following Storm Desmond, the Air Corps were tasked to support the OPW in surveying the damage from flooding in the midlands region. The Air Corps remain on standby to provide further flood relief assistance.

During the year, the Air Corps carried out over 30 official ceremonial events for various occasions. One of the highlights was the visit of the United Nations Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki Moon to Baldonnel.

The Air Corps is playing its part in the Flags for Schools Initiative, delivering the National Flag to over 200 schools in the Dublin region as well as a number of Island schools.

View a gallery of Images from Aer Corps Operations in 2015

Press Release Date: Monday 28th December 2015

For Further Information contact:

Press Officer: Comdt. Seán Ó Fátharta

Tel: 045 49 2502 , 045 49 2503

Mobile : 087 2482130

E-mail: Press Officer