Surf Life Saving WA is to build an emergency service hub and proper hangar for their helicopters at Fremantle Heliport, at Rous Head, Fremantle, with completion scheduled for early 2015.
The two helicopters – an AgustaWestland A119 Koala (VH-FOI), and a Eurocopter AS350 Soloy Super D (VH-ELR), are used for search and rescue, beach patrols, and shark spotting during the summer.
As seen in the above photo, the helicopters are currently housed in an open-ended, arch-shaped tent, resting on two shipping containers, which provides little protection from weather. The staff currently use a temporary demountable building.
The facility will be revamped to include a proper helicopter hangar, specialised surf life saving training facilities and a communications tower.
It will be funded through a $1.3 million Lotterywest grant, $490,000 of SLSWA’s reserve funds and a $50,000 donation from BlueScope steel for the building.