Rabat - The United States Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC) has dispatched three refurbished US Army CH-47D Chinook transport helicopters to Morocco’s Royal Army. The helicopters are due to arrive in Morocco in August.
Rabat – The United States Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC) has dispatched three refurbished US Army CH-47D Chinook transport helicopters to Morocco’s Royal Army. The helicopters are due to arrive in Morocco in August.
A report by Aeronautique said this transfer follows the completion of a seven-month refurbishment, conducted by the US Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) company Columbia Helicopters.
Columbia’s highly-skilled maintenance technicians conduct the work inside a separate, secure military maintenance hangar that is still a part of the company’s FAA-licensed Maintenance Repair Overhaul (MRO) facility.
The $6 million contract involved inspecting every part of the helicopters, then repairing, overhauling or replacing any parts or components as needed.
Part of the process also included repainting the aircraft in Morocco’s desert camouflage pattern, and adding their military crests, flags and registration information. Specific attention was made to ensure that the paint colors and crest sizes were exactly as they should be on the finished helicopters.
In addition to the aircraft, the foreign military sale included training for Moroccan crews, tools, publications and spare parts –all valued at $78.9 million.
In a statement, USASAC Public Affairs Board of Directors said that the helicopters were requested for humanitarian services but can be used as transport vehicles, if needed.
“The fleet delivery will provide modernized vehicles to replace existing equipment which has become outdated.”
The project has been in development since 2010, but due to Morocco’s budget constraints the delivery could not be expedited before.
Morocco’s Royal Air Force operates a large fleet of helicopters which includes 19 Aerospatiale SA-342 Gazelles, between 10 and 12 Agusta-Bell AB-206 (Bell 206)Jet Rangers, 25 AB-205As, two Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawks, and 24 SA-330 Pumas.
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