The Danish government is unhappy with how the acquisition of its EH101 helicopters has been unfolding and is concerned about reaching operational targets.
(credit: Crown Copyright)
Much of the blame is being laid at its own door, with concerns about management of the acquisition process, including the fact that the type selection and financial scope of the contract were announced before contractual talks were completed. That narrowed the scope for negotiations, auditors have found.
Mission capable rates, which aren’t contractually assured, are one of the biggest operational concerns, the auditors indicate. They note that in the first half of the year, EH101s had only a 50% operational availability, and was even lower at times -- around 30%. The goal is to reach at least 80%.
Talks with AgustaWestland so far have failed to reach a way to get the 80% available guaranteed. The contractor had made an offer on maintenance, modeled on an agreement with the U.K., but it was rejected by the Danish government, in part due to cost.
Problems with the purchase of the 14 EH101s also mean that so far the Danish military has not been able to shift all tasks over to the rotorcraft, and has had to continue operating S-61s for search and rescue tasks.
Denmark is still waiting for its full contingent of EH101s. It had received all 14 helos, but sold six of them to the U.K. defense ministry to help meet an urgent need by the Royal Air Force. Denmark will receive six new EH101s late.