PARIS, June 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. today announced the contract to sell one S-70i™ BLACK HAWK helicopter to the state of Jalisco in Mexico. With the sale, Jalisco will become the first state in Mexico to acquire its own BLACK HAWK helicopter. Sikorsky is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).
Jalisco is one of 31 states in Mexico, and borders the state of Michoacan, a high-risk area in President Calderon's war on drugs and organized crime. With the Pan American Games to be hosted in Jalisco's capital of Guadalajara later this year, the BLACK HAWK helicopter acquisition is part of a state initiative to increase safety and security in advance of this world event.
Jalisco's interest in the BLACK HAWK helicopter was spurred by the effective deployment of BLACK HAWK aircraft by the Mexico Federal Police over the last few years. The Mexico Federal Police have been flying BLACK HAWK helicopters since 2008, using them as a tool for drug interdiction and to help fight organized crime and corruption.
"An aircraft of this quality and value is a big investment for a state," said Luis Carlos Najera Guittierrez de Velasco, Secretario de Seguridad Publica of Jalisco. "The functionality and performance of this S-70i helicopter means that Jalisco now has a new and valuable tool to support our policing in the region."
The BLACK HAWK helicopter has garnered a solid reputation in Mexico as being a battle-proven, reliable aircraft for a variety of dangerous and important missions. Just three years ago, there were only six BLACK HAWK helicopters in all of Mexico. By the end of 2011, that number is expected to increase to 23, including those to be acquired by Jalisco, the Federal Police, the Air Force, and the Mexican Navy, who will receive three BLACK HAWK helicopters from the U.S. Department of State as part of the Merida Initiative later this year.
"The faith that the country of Mexico has in this product is driven by the success of the BLACK HAWK helicopters used by the Mexico Federal Police and the Mexican Air Force. Ballistic tolerant, rugged, and easy to maintain – these are the qualities of the BLACK HAWK helicopter that our Mexican customers have asked for and received in the aircraft they are flying and continue to order," said Adam Schierholz, Regional Sales Director, Sikorsky Mexico.
The S-70i helicopter is the newest BLACK HAWK variant, being produced for the international market. The aircraft was built at Sikorsky's PZL Mielec facility in Poland, the final assembly center and production test flight hub of the S-70i helicopter program.
The S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter incorporates the latest technology with advanced features such as a fully integrated digital cockpit with a dual digital automatic flight control system and coupled flight director. It also features an active vibration control system that will smooth the overall ride of the aircraft. The dual GPS/INS system with digital map provides accurate and redundant navigation for the most demanding of tactical environments. Customers around the world will benefit from the aircraft's modern, robust aircraft configuration and ability to leverage existing interoperability with Sikorsky's worldwide fleet of BLACK HAWK helicopters.
Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., USA, is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture, and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., USA, provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.
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