State officials to fly in Rs 55 cr helicopter
On December 29, the state government inducted the S-76 C++ helicopter with VVIP configuration, to be used by dignitaries like the Chief Minister, Deputy CM and the Governor.
Maharashtra is the first state in the country to procure the helicopter.
Mumbai already has five similar helicopters which are used by
corporates -- Reliance , DB reality, Essar and Hiranandani Group.
The aircraft, which cost the state Rs 55 crore succeeds the older Dolphin helicopter which had to undergo retrofitment having completed 10 years of service, in keeping with safety regulations.
Captain Sanjay Karve, Director Civil Aviation, said, "Post the YSR Reddy chopper crash in Andhra Pradesh, the DGCA has laid down strict safety guidelines for VVIP helicopters. S-76 C++ has advanced safety parameters."
The new helicopter has an Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS) to calculate the flight path and locate on-ground obstructions by giving the pilot an audio alarm. It also has a collision avoidance system that comes in handy during bad weather or poor visibility conditions.