Police air cover extended with addition of aeroplanes to NPAS fleet

Four new bespoke aeroplanes are being added to the existing national fleet of police helicopters to deliver a more responsive service for the 43 forces of England and Wales.

Mar 6, 2020
By Paul Jacques

With faster flying speeds and greater endurance times, the National Police Air Service (NPAS) says the planes will increase attendance rates to some of the more remote areas of the country, “providing a unique aerial view” to help keep more people safe.

Flying out of a custom-built base at Doncaster Sheffield Airport, the fleet of new planes will respond to the same range of tasks as the helicopters.

Two of the four planes are already certificated to fly ‘on task’ and have responded to 100 tasks across the UK in the past two months.

Ian Vause, assistant operations director for the NPAS, said: “Providing a unique aerial view to police officers on the ground, the addition of planes to the NPAS helicopter fleet has already boosted our ability to respond to policing needs across the UK.

“Supporting the location of suspects and vehicles, of vulnerable missing people and the policing ‘command and control’ of large public gatherings, such as sports matches and other events, air support is a vital tool in combatting crime and disorder and keeping people safe.

“We save local police time when it really matters and I am delighted to be able to do this more often and in more locations through the addition of this new arm to our fleet.”

Doncaster Sheffield Airport is home to one of 14 NPAS air bases offering support to all police forces across England and Wales as part of a unique national policing collaboration. From these bases, the NPAS responds to 20,000 incidents every year.

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