With the assistance of the United States, the Aerial Surveillance Service (SVA) is adding a new aircraft to facilitate law enforcement and counter-narcotics operations and a new hangar for the U.S. embassy-supported fleet of four UH-1ST helicopters that participate in counter-narcotics operations.
The Cessna Grand Caravan will support the Ministry of Public Security Air Surveillance Service by strengthening security in Costa Rica and increasing its air transportation capabilities, as well as search and rescue operations, anti-drugs operations, combat of illegal fishing and humanitarian support.
The Cessna Caravan, valued at USD $5.6 million, was purchased with U.S. and Costa Rican funds, and the total value includes the plane, spare parts, maintenance, and training.
The U.S. Embassy also donated a maintenance hangar to the Air Surveillance Service. The 3,084-square meter infrastructure is valued at more than USD $508,000 and can hold up to eight aircraft. The hangar has special lighting and ventilation, and a closed space to store spare parts and tools.
U.S. Ambassador Sharon Day highlighted the importance of the donation: “The United States is committed to working hand-in-hand with Costa Rica to make the region more stable, more prosperous, and more secure. The addition of this aircraft and hangar will help Costa Rica enhance its support to isolated communities and its ability to patrol its territory, making a difference in the lives of Costa Ricans.