Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Dauphin Helicopters.

Peadar Clohessy

Question:

3 Mr. Clohessy asked the Minister for Defence if one or more Dauphin helicopters have been grounded and are being used to supply spare parts; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

No Dauphin helicopter has been grounded for the reason mentioned.

It is my information that one of the helicopters in question has been grounded and is being used to supply spare parts. As there are only five such helicopters this means that 20 per cent of the fleet has been grounded. This is a serious matter.

I can assure the Deputy that none of the helicopters has been grounded in order to supply spare parts. At various stages one of the helicopters will be grounded for servicing.

Are helicopters grounded for any other reason?

At present one of the helicopters is at the point of manufacture undergoing a major overhaul. This forms part of the regular service.