Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 10°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Video/Gallery: Tour round police helicopter base at Wattisham Airfield

16:28 26 February 2013

A tour of the cold war hanger (Suffolk Branch of the National Police Air Service Hangar Facility) at Wattisham Airfield which is the home of the police helicopter.

A tour of the cold war hanger (Suffolk Branch of the National Police Air Service Hangar Facility) at Wattisham Airfield which is the home of the police helicopter.

Archant

THE boss of Suffolk’s police helicopter has emphasised the service’s importance in tackling crime.

shares

Base manager Julian Bosley was speaking as he gave an exclusive tour round the helicopter facility at Wattisham Airfield.

The county’s helicopter which covers Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and north Essex can be airborne in response to an emergency call in just two minutes.

Sergeant Bosley, 42, said: “We deal with 100 to 150 incidents per month – a wide range of things- reactive stuff, vehicle pursuits, crimes in progress, missing people, people having a crisis.

“We are aware we are noisy, we ask police on the ground and we stay there until they are confident it is secure.

“It costs about £1.25million per year to run the helicopter, staff and engineering costs. I know it costs an awful lot to run a police helicopter but a lot of people are quite proud that Suffolk as a county was able to get funding together to run a helicopter ourselves. It’s a service of reassurance. I always know it makes people ask what’s going on when they see it in the air.

“The east of England was the first set of police forces to move to the National Police Air Service which happened for a combination of things. It’s about efficiency, there’s no doubt, having one aircraft here for the county is not very efficient.”

The team fly the £6million Eurocopter EC135 which carries a range of tools to counter criminals down on the ground.

A thermal imaging camera can detect people in the dark, a separate camera provides coverage in the daytime as well as a rear search light and a powerful PA system.

A former nuclear bunker, dating from the Cold War era, houses the helicopter and its team at the base near Stowmarket.

The base’s personnel include a team of four pilots, seven air observers and a team of engineers.

The Eurocopter can stay airborne for up to two hours and cruises at 120knots (140mph).

Suffolk is protected with a 24-hour helicopter presence since the National Police Air Service took over from Suffolk Constabulary last October.

shares

2 comments

  • Story: "Tour round police helicopter base" Actual: 25 seconds of poor footage shown in the wrong format, of a landing, and no tour!

    Report this comment

    john

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

  • DID I READ THAT WRONG ,,??

    Report this comment

    MIGUEL100

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Traffic

The A14 has reopened after a seven-vehicle crash on the A14 this evening.

Oscar Fitzgerald

A man from Lowestoft who raped a 12-year-old girl after meeting her online has been jailed.

Fire Service Stock Pictures

Firefighters are currently tackling a blaze in Wivenhoe.

Stowmarket's Regal Theatre is premiering Dad's Army. In conjunction with the cinemas 80th Birthday.

A Suffolk town’s theatre and cinema kicked off its 80th birthday celebrations in style with a sell-out premiere screening of star-studded film Dad’s Army.

An East of England Ambulance on a blue-light call. Library image.

An ambulance crash which left a man fighting for his life has prompted two investigations.

The Lego model of Moyses Hall Museum in Bury arrives at the museum.

Mayors get to open and unveil pretty much everything, but one ceremonial Suffolk leader is likely the first ever to reveal to the world a Lego version of himself opening a Lego version of the local museum.

Remi Morrison is pictured at Pump and Grind in Ipswich.

Another week of great music and events is upon us and Remi Morrison brings you a round up of what is happening in Ipswich over the next few days.

Most read

Fred Olsen Travel Sale

cover

Click here to view
the Fred Olsen
Travel Sale

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24