Visitors evince keen interest in the latest helicopter models on display at the Abu Dhabi Aviation stall, during the Dubai Helishow 2010 at Airport Expo. Image Credit: Ahmad Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: Organisers of the fourth edition of the Dubai Helishow confirmed a Dh1.1 billion ($300 million) deal between the UAE Air Force and Sikorsky Aircraft.

As part of the deal, the UAE will take delivery of a total of 60 BlackHawk utility helicopters, with a direct order from Sikorsky for 20 UH-60L BlackHawks worth $300 million.

At the show, the UAE Airforce displayed one of the previously delivered aircraft, weaponised and fitted with the Flir Systems Star Safire with a stabilised, multi-sensor system.

Joseph Gigantelli, Sikorsky vice-president for Europe, Middle East, Turkey and Africa, said: "The new 40 UH-60M aircraft will be released in February 2011 with deliveries running through 2013. We have already sold into Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Jordon, Egypt, Bahrain and we will be looking at Kuwait and Qatar as well in the future."

Phoenix Aviation UK also announced their GCAA Design Organisation Approval (DOA). The accreditation is the first-of-its-kind in the region to target helicopters and small jets.

Well-placed

Phoenix is uniquely placed to offer high-end designs and installation of avionics and mission enhancing systems.

Alastair MacGregor, Dir-ector of Sales and Business Development said: "We are delighted to have achieved this distinction and this will position us perfectly to offer a country modification service direct to the operator". Abdullah Abulhoul, CEO of Mediac Communications and Exhibitions, organisers of the show said: "The first day of the show had an excellent turnout with some strong meetings held between key players in the industry. We're looking forward to more great announcements and deals through the remainder of the show in all sectors."

Ivan Kristoff, founder, EIGER Rope Access Work will hold a workshop today to present a study on the High-Rise Emergency and Aerial Rescue Team's work (H.E.A.R.T.), which played an important role in the development of safety standards for buildings in Canada.

The Dubai Helishow concludes today at the Dubai Airport Expo Centre.

Security is top priority

Saif Mohammad Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), stressed that the UAE considers civil aviation security our top priority.This is achieved by implementing the highest levels of international security standards backed up with state-of-the-art technology.

The UAE has endeavoured and practiced assisting various states in combating threats to aviation security in every possible way.

The UAE also believes that any threat or gap in its aviation security can directly affect the security of other countries.

In view of the discovery of explosives in a cargo consignment at Dubai and at other airports in Europe, the UAE has been assisting international civil aviation agencies to address the issue and prevent any future threat to civil aviation.

Simultaneously, all possible measures as stipulated in the National Civil Aviation Security Programme are being considered internally, in coordination with concerned stakeholders, to ensure the safety of passenger as well as cargo flights operating to and from the UAE.

As the designated authority for aviation security within the UAE, the GCAA is constantly monitoring the security situation at its airports and is equipped to take necessary action as deemed necessary.