Two Cormorant helicopters and crew members from 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron at 19 Wing Comox have been deployed to help those in flood-ravaged Alberta.
Capt. Trevor Reid, 19 Wing public affairs officer, said Friday two crews are assisting the Alberta provincial government in rescue efforts in that province.
“442 Squadron was anticipating a request for assistance so they did have a helicopter ready to go. The first helicopter arrived (Thursday) afternoon,” explained Reid.
“They’ve been doing so missions such as hoisting people, throughout the flood-affected area, specially the High River area. The second helicopter arrived later today (Friday), and they will be conducting operations as well.”
He added the Cormorant aircraft, which has a hoist with two hooks, can carry up to 5,000 kilograms, and up to 12 stretchers.
One of the first missions the crews were involved in was aiding an evacuation of a seniors’ home of around 20 people near High River.
Although the squadron may be most recognized by their rescue missions over land and sea, Reid said they are trained and fully prepared to respond to a variety of situations.
“From the pilots to the flight engineers to the search and rescue technicians are trained and well-equipped to respond to a natural disaster emergency such as what we’re seeing now in Alberta,” he added.
The crew is based at the Calgary International Airport and will remain in the province for as long as the commanders on the ground feel necessary, noted Reid.