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Providing security and safety for the six islands of the Dutch Caribbean - at and above sea - is the main task of the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard. Aviagraphers had an in-depth look at its helicopter operations.

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British helicopter provider Cobham operates two AW139s helicopters on behalf of the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard. One of these is seen here, with registration PH-DCG.

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Crews are mixed – Dutch military and British contractors –thus enabling operational military experience, police flying skills and local knowledge to be combined.

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The AW139 has a state of the art cockpit which significantly reduces the workload of the pilot. As a result, daylight missions can be flown with one pilot only.

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Coastal patrols are flown daily along the rugged coasts of the Dutch Caribbean islands, like Aruba as pictured here. Note the natural pool!

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Geography on the island is such, that limited mountain flying can be practiced, whilst inspecting the environment for unwanted activity.

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Going RTB – returning to base, a shadow is captured over the Hato plains, a desert-like area near the home base of the helicopters.

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Sistership PH-FBH leaves Hato airport for another late afternoon inspection mission. The nose mounted FLIR is a useful tool during daylight, but even more so at both dusk and dawn and during night ops.