Los Angeles County Supervisors unanimously approved a $4.2 million contract Tuesday as expected to maintain and repair the county’s fleet of five Sikorsky Firehawk helicopters.
The contract was approved on consent and was deemed a need for county firefighting personnel. A spokesperson for Kathryn Barger said the helicopters are a critical part of the county’s ability to fight fires, especially during wildfire season.
The contract between the Consolidated Fire Protection District of Los Angeles County and Helicopter Support Inc. is initially for three years, with two one-year extensions, and an additional twelve month-to-month extensions. The yearly amount will not exceed $700,000 and the contract will last no more than six years, according to a letter from Los Angeles County Fire Chief Daryl Osby to the board of supervisors.
Osby said the Firehawk helicopters help fight brush fires via water drops and transporting fire crews, assist in swift water and hoist rescues and provide emergency medical transportation year-round. The county has three Firehawk helicopters and is expected to receive two new “mission ready” Firehawks by the end of the year.
Osby said the contract costs will be covered by the county and future budgets will allocate funds at no net cost to the county.