SHAH ALAM: PDRM helicopters flying again. PDRM Air Wing helicopters – the Ecureil and the AW139s, were seen flying over the weekend, most likely after being grounded for safety checks following a crash involving one of the helicopters in Tawau, on February 28. Crash story here.
The helicopter that crashed was among the three AW139 purchased/leased by police several years back.The media has not reported any updates on the probe into the crash even though it happened one month ago. However as a single AW139 was seen flying over Shah Alam over the weekend it is likely that the cause was not technical related and the PDRM helicopter fleet had a safety standown. Of course, they could have flown earlier and I simply missed them
As I am writing this a check on Flightradar 24 revealed that a PDRM AW139, 9M-PMA was conducting surveillance above Kuala Lumpur (see picture below)
The helicopter was delivered two years ago as from quoted in the crash story.
9M-PMC was one of two AW139 delivered to PDRM in 2016 after the contract was signed in 2015. The other is tail number, 9M-PMB. The third aircraft with the tail number, 9M-PMA, was delivered in 2018.
The safety standown is likely the reason that the police and military had announced that they will be using commercially available drones for surveillance flights to enforce the Movement Control Order. I reported for Janes last week that the military had taken delivery of an initial batch of Insitu ScanEagles II gifted by the US.
Yes drones are cheaper but a low flying police helicopter will be a much better detterent.
The ScanEagles will not be used for the surveillance flights as CDF Gen Affendi Buang said commercial drones are better suited for the surveillance role as it most of it will be done in the urban areas. Personally I think the ScanEagles will be more useful for surveillance missions on our maritime borders especially those in ESSCOM AOR.
— Malaysian Defence