Police pledge fight for air support

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THE chairman of South Yorkshire Police Authority today vowed to fight to maintain effective air support after it was announced the force helicopter will be replaced by a new National Police Air Service.

The county’s dedicated chopper will stop operating in January 2013.

The National Police Air Service will consist of 23 aircraft operating from 20 bases, with the nearest to South Yorkshire in Derbyshire, Humberside and West Yorkshire.

But South Yorkshire Police Authority chair Charles Perryman said: “We will not be pressurised into making or accepting a decision regarding the future of the force helicopter until we know how this will impact on the standard of service to the public in South Yorkshire.”

“We want to make sure when the national model is implemented it maintains the existing excellent service.”