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Left: Chief Pilot Lee Hamilton Above: Chief Pilot Lee Hamilton conducting high reconnaisance prior to landing Photos: Dana Maxfield

The aviation facility was everything you

would expect of a well-organized and well-man- aged flight operation. Neat, orderly, and hangar full of obviously well maintained aircraft.

to take pictures of everything that has an Alabama State Seal on it,” Hamilton advised us. Enough said. The unit, when able and available, conducts train- ing and operations throughout the state, with near- ly every law enforcement agency that submits a request.

The one aircraft that stood out amongst the others in the hangar was the Bell 407.

Forget the

fact that this aircraft was manufactured 11 years ago, this machine looked like it had just rolled off the showroom floor. It was clear this team takes a great deal of pride in the manner in which they main- tain their equipment.

This 407 was very nicely-

equipped, full Chelton panel, NVG compliant, searchlights and FLIR, rescue hoist and quick dis- connect Dart tactical benches. As we arrived, the team was just finishing up the installation of the tactical benches and preflight. Interesting to note, everyone is involved in the preflight and aircraft preparation phases. Very little chance anything is overlooked with this approach.

“You are free

ELMORE COUNTY The training site was an abandoned farm. Off

the beaten path would be an understatement. However, I soon learned that these training loca- tions are carefully selected so they do not attract too many curious onlookers. This place fit the bill perfectly. Upon arrival I discovered that

the Bell

407, crew and Rotorcraft Professional’s Dana Maxfield and Sarah Kritner had already landed and the aircraft was being prepared for the first segment of today’s training exercises and tactical insertion. The Bell 407 is the perfect vehicle to get a small group into a small landing area.


with the Dart Tactical Benches on each side, the 407 can deliver four Special Operations types - two on each side. We were allowed to get as close as we felt we could without interfering, a def- initely unique vantage point.

Elmore County Insertion Team boarded the 407’s bench seats, secured their seatbelts, and off they went.

The target of the insertion was an abandoned

farmhouse adjacent to the landing zone. The air- craft was to approach and land to a designated area then the

insertion team was 19 to conduct their

Properly briefed, the

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