Volga-Dnepr in helicopter switch over project

Volga-Dnepr An124 loading a helicopter

Volga-Dnepr and forwarder Panalpina have transported two helicopters from opposite sides of the globe on behalf of multinational infrastructure firm Babcock.

The project saw Volga-Dnepr deliver two AugustaWestland AW139 helicopters from the UK to their new home in Melbourne, Australia, and transfer two Sikorsky S-92 in the opposite direction from Darwin, Australia, to Aberdeen in Scotland.

Working in partnership with Panalpina, Volga-Dnepr utilised one of its Antonov 124-100 ramp-loading freighters for the connections between the UK-Australia-UK, an aircraft capable of accommodating up to 12 helicopters in its cargo hold depending on their size and weight.

Due to airport specification requirements, Glasgow Prestwick was chosen as the UK point of departure for the AW139 helicopters as well as for the arrival of the S-92’s.

In the first stage of the project, two 5.5 ton, 16.7 m long AugustaWestland AW139 helicopters – safely wrapped and with dismounted blades – were delivered by road from Aberdeen to Prestwick, where Volga-Dnepr’s team of experts oversaw the precise loading process into the An-124-100 using only the aircraft’s ramp.

After unloading in Melbourne, the Antonov 124 departed to Darwin, where the two 7-ton S-92 helicopters were ready for loading ahead of their journey to join up with Babcock’s business unit in Aberdeen.

This second flight was performed at the lower altitude of 8,000 m to maintain the cargo hold pressure level requested by the customer. All dismounted parts were delivered together with the helicopters.