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Thunderstreaks.com | October 17, 2021

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KLu: Sud Alouette III

KLu: Sud Alouette III

On January 1 2016 the Dutch Air Force farewelled the last 4 surviving Alouettes, then based at Gilze Rijen AB. And thus ended a 51 years long career.

The first of the 77 examples entered service in 1964. Five of them were in use in the Search & Rescue role (portayed in a different gallery on this website) and the remaining 72 flew army duties with nos 298, 299 and 300 squadrons. In 1995 it was decided to replace the Alouettes and gradually other helicopter types (Apaches, Chinooks, Cougars and AB412s -in the SAR-role-) took over their tasks.

In the first years of their servicelife the Alouettes wore a green livery with a white registration; in the early 1970ties , however ,the serials were repainted in black (difficult to read by aircraft-spotters from a distance !)

The last 4 Alouettes were A-301, A-292, A-275 and A-247. They were used for VIP-trips and liaison duties, painted in a blue colourscheme.

Four helicopters equipped the famous Dutch helicopter demonstration -team The Grasshoppers from 1973 to 1996. They flew in different colour-schemes over the years and were very popular both inland and abroad.

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