On the eve of Russian Air Fleet Day, the staff of the Sakhalin customs aviation division has been given the right to pilot two KA-32S helicopters. Until now they had to enlist the help of pilots from the Sakhalin Airways company.
As the Far Eastern customs department has told RIA Novosti, now the customs officers will be able to perform air patrols on their own to protect marine biological resources and carry out reconnaissance to reveal poaching vessels.
If necessary, the helicopter crews will bring the staff of the customs quick reaction unit to poaching ships trying to retreat into neural waters.
The Sakhalin customs officers have been the first in Russia to assimilate the practice of bringing customs staff from helicopters at high seas to poaching vessels. Apart from patrol helicopters, the Sakhalin customs house also has its flotilla of high-speed vessels.