UK firm chosen as preferred bidder for new €670m search and rescue helicopter contract

Current operator underwent critical review following 2017 Rescue 116 crash

CHC Ireland had bid for the new helicopter search and rescue contract, but the government announced today that it had selected Bristow Limited, a British firm, as the preferred bidder. Picture: Sean Curtin

A British company has been chosen as the preferred bidder for the new €670 million helicopter search and rescue contract instead of the current operator.

Since 2012, the contract for flying around 800 search-and-rescue missions annually has been outsourced to CHC Ireland, a subsidiary of the US-owned Canadian Helicopter Corporation.

The company was the subject of a critical review by the air accident investigation unit into how one of its Sikorsky helicopters, Rescue 116, crashed ...