Huey choppers remain efficient service provider for Filipinos
The Philippine Air Force (PAF) Utility Helicopter (UH-1H), popularly known as a “Huey” chopper, is known in providing huge assistance to the Armed Forces of the Philippines in achieving its mission during calamities and insurgency.
It became the working horse of the PAF in providing service in accordance with its mandated mission, such as conducting medical evacuation, relief operations, heli-lift operations, aerial firefighting, and search and rescue operations.
Possessing this kind of helicopter gives the AFP a great advantage, taking into consideration its capabilities, such as accessing remote and mountainous areas and transporting severely ill or unstable patients from rangy places.
During this pandemic, the UH-1H choppers have been used to airlift learning modules in the remotest areas of Benguet, such as in Tacadang, Kibungan.
The UH-1H has faster mobilization than fixed-wing aircraft since it only needs smaller landing area. This platform is also useful in conducting aerial surveillance for intelligence purposes in support of the country’s counter-insurgency campaign.
With the subsequent use of UH-1H for various missions, the PAF needs additional aerial platforms of similar kind and capability. That is why in order to complement the mission of the UH-1H, the PAF acquired six modern S-70i Black Hawks utility helicopters that are part of the 16 units ordered from Polish company Polskie Zaklady Lotnicze Sp.z.o.o. and manufactured under license from Sikorsky U.S.A.
The said helicopters, which are part of the PAF’s modernization, were procured through a government-to-government negotiation.
Having these helicopters in PAF’s inventory will be vital in providing assistance and hope to the Filipinos, especially in this time of crisis.
With the pandemic, these Black Hawks will serve as transport vehicle of the Department of Health personnel in delivering Covid-19 vaccines, medicines, and relief goods to the Filipinos living in different areas in the country.
Indeed, these helicopters are not only transport equipment but also carriers of hope and endless service to the Filipino people. — PAF-TOG1, Baguio City