Following the arrival of the first state of the art search and rescue helicopter last month, the HM Coastguard base at Newquay Airport has welcomed the arrival of the second Sikorsky S-92 aircraft marking the base at its full aircraft complement.

Bristow Helicopters’ crews continue to carry out final preparations for the service going live in January 2016.

The aircraft and the base are operated by Bristow Helicopters Ltd on behalf of HM Coastguard after the company was awarded the ten year UK SAR contract by the Department for Transport in March 2013.

Samantha Willenbacher, director of UK search and rescue at Bristow Helicopters, said: “We are excited to welcome the second S92 to its base. One of the Newquay-based engineers has named the aircraft the Cornish Sisters and we are delighted to see them flying from their new home.

“We continue to remain focused on training and preparations to take over this lifesaving service from our colleagues in the military in January 2016, and once again thank the local community for their support as we prepare to deliver this vital public service.”

The SAR helicopter base at Newquay Airport is one of ten bases from which the UK SAR contract will be delivered, five of which are already live. The existing HM Coastguard facilities at Lee-on-Solent, Stornoway and Sumburgh will transition to the new contract in 2017. Bristow Helicopters already operates the SAR helicopter service from Sumburgh and Stonoway.