The Air Patrol Squadron uses helicopters and airplanes to carry out the flight operations required by the statutory duties of the Finnish Border Guard. The main tasks of the aircraft are border surveillance on land and at sea as well as maritime search and rescue. Another key task of the surveillance aircraft is monitoring of the maritime environment.
The Air Patrol Squadron maintains continuous maritime search and rescue readiness with three helicopters located in Turku, Helsinki and Rovaniemi. The aircraft provide cooperation authorities with support in search and rescue tasks, hospital transports, extinguishing forest fires and other executive assistance tasks. If necessary, the Air Patrol Squadron participates in international border surveillance operations in the EU area and environmental surveillance throughout the Baltic Sea region.
The Air Patrol Squadron has 12 helicopters and 2 surveillance aircraft that fly a total of approximately 4,000 hours a year. The helicopter models are H215 Super Puma, AB/B 412 and AW 119 Ke Koala. The surveillance aircraft model is Dornier DO-228.
The main tasks of the aircraft are border surveillance on land and at sea as well as maritime search and rescue. The Air Patrol Squadron maintains a multi-engine helicopter at on-call readiness in Turku, Helsinki and Rovaniemi. The on-call helicopters are utilised in the best possible manner for all urgent rescue and official tasks. Maritime search and rescue and other rescue tasks are carried out on a daily basis.
Planned patrol flight operations support border surveillance performed by the border guard and coast guard districts. Border and environmental surveillance in the sea area is mainly carried out by surveillance aircraft. The AW119 helicopters are used to perform border surveillance and all other tasks suitable for the model for various authorities. The aircraft provide cooperation authorities with support in search and rescue tasks, hospital transports, extinguishing forest fires and other executive assistance tasks.
The Air Patrol Squadron actively participates in international border surveillance operations and environmental surveillance operations coordinated by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency Frontex with a surveillance aircraft.
The Air Patrol Squadron is responsible for the airworthiness of its aircraft and performs the maintenance required for its aircraft as independent work and partly as outsourced services. The aircraft are always maintained in good working order so that flight duties can be carried out efficiently and safely.
Today, the Air Patrol Squadron is an administrative unit that is responsible for the flight operations of the Finnish Border Guard. It employs approximately 130 people. The Air Patrol Squadron consists of the headquarters and three bases located in connection with the Helsinki-Vantaa, Turku and Rovaniemi airports.
The Headquarters of the Air Patrol Squadron assists the commander of the squadron in managing the squadron, handles planning, preparation and implementation in accordance with decisions, and develops and supervises activities. Communications for the Air Patrol Squadron is led by the headquarters.
The Flight Operations Unit is responsible for planning and leading operative flight operations in the Air Patrol Squadron and providing flight training for pilots. The Technical Group handles maintenance and repair activities and monitors the airworthiness of Finnish Border Guard aircraft.
The command of each unit operates at the Helsinki base.
The Helsinki base is located in the Helsinki-Vantaa Airport area. The aircraft fleet in Helsinki consists of two H215 Super Puma and two AW 119 Ke Koala helicopters.
The Rovaniemi base is located near Rovaniemi Airport. The aircraft fleet in Rovaniemi consists of three AB-412 maritime rescue helicopters and two AW 119 Ke Koala helicopters.
The Turku base is located in the immediate vicinity of Turku Airport. The aircraft fleet in Turku consists of two DO-228 airplanes and three H215/AS-332 Super Puma maritime rescue helicopters.