A formal unveiling ceremony was held at Šiauliai Air Base on June 4 for the first Airbus Helicopters AS365N3+ Dauphin II for the Lithuanian Air Force. The aircraft had arrived two days earlier following its delivery flight from the factory in France.
It is one of three being acquired for search and rescue duties under a Є52 million contract which was signed in Vilnius on October 25, 2013. Funding for the acquisition has been assisted by the European Union, which has provided finance for one of the three, while Lithuania has used its own funds to buy the other two.
In addition to being used for SAR tasks, the helicopters will also undertake fire-fighting missions, patient transfers, organ transplant flights and provide emergency support for state and municipal institutions.