Japanese operator Nakanihon Air Service (NNK) ordered two Bell 429s for use in its helicopter emergency medical services, Bell Helicopter announced during Heli-Expo. The helicopters are slated for delivery later this year.
The order continues a relationship between Bell and NNK that spans six decades. NNK ordered its first Bell, a Bell 47G-2, in April 1960. Since then, the operator has purchased 77 Bells and currently owns 13, including 206, 430, 204, 412 and 429 models.
“It is remarkable that our loyal customer, Nakanihon, has purchased its 78th and 79th Bell helicopters over a period of nearly 60 years, emphasizing the trust in the Bell product and support provided by Bell in Japan,” said Richard Thornley, Bell Helicopters, managing director, Japan. The new order, he added “is a huge endorsement for the 429” in the HEMS role.
In addition to owning the helicopters, NKK manages eight Bell 412EPs and 412EPIs for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. And, NNK has been an authorized customer service facility for Bell since 1994 and customizes a number of the helicopters that enter Japan.