MP to refer decision to Ombudsman

The Conservative MP for South Dorset has referred the decision to close the Portland Search and Rescue helicopter to the Ombudsman.

Richard Drax said it was because the Department for Transport (DfT) had failed to consult over the plans.

The Government announced in March that operations will move out of Portland, Chivenor and Culdrose to a new base at Newquay Airport.

The service will be run by a private company, Bristow, which is based in the US.

While I understand that the Minister [Stephen Hammond MP] would like to consider the matter closed, it is by no means closed for the people of South Dorset and the millions who flock to our coastline every year.

We depend upon this helicopter. A quarter of all coastguard callouts every year take place within the reach of the Portland helicopter..."

– Richard Drax, Conservative MP, South Dorset

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Portland Helicopter Campaign

Questions are being raised over the government's decision to close the Portland rescue helicopter by 2015.