Part of Field Support Bureau, the Aviation Services Section is responsible for the operation, maintenance and control of the OPP helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft.
Our mandate is to provide effective aviation-based support, through a commitment to excellence and efficiency in the delivery of law enforcement services, throughout the Province of Ontario.
Aviation Services typically perform, but are not limited to, the following tasks:
- Search and Rescue (SAR) - approximately 65 per cent of all helicopter missions are of a search and rescue nature;
- Surveillance (electronic, video, thermal imaging, visual);
- Drug eradication (visual, thermal imaging);
- Support of Specialized Units (Canine, Tactical, Emergency Response, Underwater Search and Recovery etc.,);
- Support during public demonstrations;
- Transportation of Personnel (routine transport, remote location transport);
- Prisoner escorts;
- Photography (Video, Still, FLIR, Wescam);
- Suspect apprehension pursuits;
- Search and containment of escapees;
- Major events (providing a communication and observation platform);
- Regional traffic/crime initiatives;
- Evidence searches; and
- Aerial Enforcement Program (Highway Safety Division).
The OPP has owned and operated airplanes and helicopters since 1974; currently
we maintain four aircraft. The fleet consists of a Pilatus PC12/45, operating
from a base in Thunder Bay; a Cessna 206, operating
from a base in Orillia; plus two Eurocopter EC135P2+
helicopters, operating from bases in Sudbury and
The aircraft primarily operate within Ontario although the fixed-wing aircraft can be assigned to missions anywhere within North America. Additional aircraft are leased on an "as-needed" basis. The OPP fleet accrues approximately 2500 - 3000 hours of flight time annually.
The OPP makes aircraft services available to all other police services
and government agencies within the province
of Ontario, on a priority