Hawaii Army National Guard receives new medevac helicopters

Photo: Hawaii Army National Guard

The Hawaii Army National Guard has some new aircraft to assist in medical emergencies.

Three HH-60M Blackhawk helicopters were offloaded from a C-17 transport at Kalaeloa Airfield Friday.

They will be utilized by a new aeromedical evacuation unit, Detachment 1, Company G, 1st Battalion, 189th Aviation Regiment, which will provide medevac support to military entities, and may also provide supplemental support to civil authorities.

This unit is one of the most requested types of units to deploy and will have about 30 soldiers, most of whom will be drill status or part-time forces.

The new Blackhawk models differ from HIARNG’s current UH-60M Blackhawks in that they have an external hoist, a Forward Looking Infrared Radar (FLIR) and the capability to carry six litter patients or six ambulatory (or three of each patients) within its MEDEVAC cabin configuration.

The unit will initially operate from Wheeler Army Airfield, Army Aviation Support Facility #1, then move to the nearly completed $32.6 million Army Aviation Support Facility located at Kalaeloa.

The Kalaeloa AASF will encompass almost 67,000 square feet and will have a large hangar to support aircraft as well as an administrative area for classrooms, restrooms, conference rooms and offices.

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