RCMP helicopter to leave Kamloops this summer

KAMLOOPS - The two RCMP helicopters that cover the B.C. Interior will be shuffled around this summer and Kamloops is on the losing end.

Kamloops RCMP Supt. Brad Mueller says the local police helicopter will be moving at the beginning of July.

“The target date is July 1. It’s moving to Kelowna and the Kelowna helicopter is moving up to Prince George,” he says.

In exchange for the helicopter Mueller says the Southeast District is receiving a fixed wing aircraft, which will be based out of Kelowna as well.

The plane seats 12 and can be used to move an emergency response team quickly.

The RCMP decided last year to move aircraft.

Southeast District media relations officer Staff Sgt. Rob Vermeulen said at the time Kelowna is a natural hub for the district as it’s central to the area.

"The addition of a helicopter to the North District will provide more effective operational support to remote areas where fixed wing aircraft cannot operate, or are not effective,” Vermeulen said. "There is minimal impact to helicopter operations in Kamloops, due to the proximity of the Kelowna hangar."

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