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Contracted search and rescue aircraft and equipment

Providing 24/7 search and rescue (SAR) service for Australia.

We provide search and rescue (SAR) for incidents which occur within the Australian SAR region. We currently have contracts in place to ensure there are aircraft available for SAR 24/7. This is known as the dedicated airborne SAR capability. It allows us to task aviation assets to SAR incidents in a timely manner within the Australian SAR region.

Find out about our dedicated search and rescue aircraft—the Challenger.

A contract was signed in October 2014 with Cobham SAR Services Pty Ltd to provide the next generation aircraft dedicated to search and rescue from late 2016, for a period of 12 years.

In addition to the dedicated SAR aircraft, we maintain a panel  of contracted fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft available for SAR.

These aircraft form part of a comprehensive capability mix for effective SAR service:

Dedicated airborne SAR capability

Dedicated fixed wing aircraft and crews capable of:

  • electronic and visual search
  • deployment of emergency supplies
  • command and control
  • homing in on distress beacons.

Rotary wing rescue

Rescue capable and winch-equipped helicopters and crew for rescue, homing to distress beacons, visual search, and limited supply dropping

Rotary wing search

Helicopters and crew for homing to distress beacons and visual search.

Fixed wing Search

Fixed wing aircraft and crew for homing to distress beacons, visual search and communications relay.

Last updated: 9 November 2022