Aviation

Counterdrug Aviation Support:

Mission:

As authorized by the National Defense Authorization Act and directed by the governor and The Adjutant General, the Counterdrug Aviation Mission is to safeguard our communities by providing state of the art Aviation reconnaissance and observation support to federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies' counterdrug operations, including the disruption and dismantling of Transnational Criminal Organizations.  

 

Support: Army National Guard and Air National Guard have dedicated aviation assets to the National Guard Counterdrug Program since the late 1980s. Counterdrug aircrews support reconnaissance and observation, domestic cannabis  suppression operations, transportation, law enforcement agency training, and coalitions. The Air National Guard provides RC-26, C-130 and HH-60 assets, and the Army National Guard provides UH-72A, UH-60 and CH-47 assets. Counterdrug Aviation support to law enforcement agencies results in seizures of billions of dollars worth of drugs, currencey, and related property each year.

Mission Equipment:

Developed around counterdrug mission requirements, the mission equipment on the RC-26 and the UH-72A provide state of the art aerial support to ensure domestic operations and law enforcement counterdrug mission success. Their immediate response capability and the unique mission equipment make these assets among the first to be called for mission support.

The UH-72A Lakota, with the updated Mission Equipment Package (MEP), increased the mission capability and the safety of Counterdrug Aviation. Operational Safety and capability is increased by the UH-72A's Lakota multi-engine design and digital flight instruments. The advanced Mission Equipment Package (MEP) provides the UH-72A Lakota with digital thermal imagery that interfaces with a moving map, a 40 million candlepower searchlight and greater stand-off distance. MEP equipped aircraft afford instantaneous situational awareness, command and control compatible with law enforcement and civilian equipment, and decreased visual signature. Real time audio/video data transmissions and downlink give law enforcement officers the ability to record evidence and increase mission effectiveness.

The RC-26 carries a similar capability to the UH-72A Lakota while providing increased on-station time and greater stand off distances. An extensive communications suite allows communications with all law enforcement agencies and other first responders. The RC-26 aircrews have backgrounds in almost every military aviation platform and effectively bridge the gap between Department of Defense and civil authorities.

Counterdrug Aviation service and support is provided at no cost to law enforcement agencies.