The pilots and flight crews of the two newly-acquired attack AgustaWestland AW-109E “Power” helicopters are constantly conducting drills and maneuvers that will allow its successful integration with the Navy’s Gregorio Del Pilar frigates.
This was stressed by Philippine Navy (PN) public affairs office chief Cmdr. Lued Lincuna in a message to the PNA Thursday. “They (armed AW-109E pilots and flight crews) are now focusing on (shipboard) training,” he stressed.
After completing this series of training, Lincuna said that two armed AW-109Es will be given their first missions. The Philippine Navy (PN)’s armed AgustaWestland AW-109E helicopters, which was commissioned last Aug. 10, is now capable of shipboard service.
“[The two armed AW-109Es are] now capable of shipboard operations and the crew are continuously honing their skills,” said Lincuna.
The Navy’s armed AW-109Es were commissioned last Aug. 10. They made their first deck landings nine days later. The PN’s armed AW-109Es are equipped with two .50 caliber machinegun pods and six 2.74-inch rocket launchers each.
The PN’s AW-109E contract for five helicopters, including the two armed units, is worth Php1.33 billion.