U.S. Coast Guard Aviation History
Sikorsky HH-52A Seaguard
Manufacturer: Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation
Other Designation: S-62C, HU2S-1G
Aircraft Type: Amphibious Helicopter
Cost: $250,000 (1963)
Rotor Diameter: 53 ft 0 in.
Blade Area: 2,206 sq. ft.
Height: 16 ft. 0 in.
Length: 44 ft. 6.5 in.
Top Speed: 109 kts.
Cruising Speed: 85 kts.
Sea Level Climb:1,080 ft./min.
Range: 474 nm.
Empty Weight: 5,083 lb.
Gross Weight: 8,300 lb.
Service Ceiling: 11,200 ft.
Powerplant: General Electric T-58-GE-8B turboshaft (1,250 shp. Derated to 730 shp.
Takeoff Power: 730 shp.
The Sikorsky HH-52A helicopter was developed from a Sikorsky commercially developed S-62 amphibious helicopter which mated the dynamic components form the S-55 (HO4S-3/HH-19G) helicopter with a boat hull and a light weight turboshaft engine. Sikorsky funded a “Fly before you Buy” USCG Test Program conducted by LCDR Frank Shelly, a Navy Test Pilot School Graduate, and ADCM Clayton Roll, a former Enlisted Naval Aviator(AP), at the Naval Air Test Center, Patuxent River, Maryland. This Test Program confirmed the contractor claims for performance and suitability to fill the mission. A contract for the initial quantity of helicopters was signed on June 21, 1962. The first of 99 helicopters was delivered on January 9, 1963. The last HH-52A helicopter was delivered on January 17, 1969. During 26 years of service the HH-52A saved over 15,000 lives. The last flight of the HH-52A helicopter was on September 12, 1989
HH-52A 3-view drawing
HH-52A 1383 rescues man from roof St. Bernard Parish Louisiana in 1965 after hurricane Betsey. HH=52A helicopters rescued 1,200 people after hurricane Betsy.
HH-52A 1355 making water pickup using the rescue platform which permits rescues more quickly than hoisting survivors
HH-52A 1364 making rescue using basket and hydraulic rescue hoist.
HH-52A lands on board the CGC Westwind during flight operations in Gravesend Bay, NY, March 1964.
HH-52A 1367 picks up cargo in Antarctica while serving aboard CGC Northwind in 1986
USCG crew picks up last HH-52A delivery January 1969
Aircraft History File, U.S. Coast Guard Historian’s Office.
Records and Files, Igor I. Sikorsky Historical Archives, Inc.
Coast Guard Aviation Association- Coast Guard Aviation History- Coming of Age (1957-1975)
Arthur Pearcy, U.S. Coast Guard Aircraft Since 1916 (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 1991), pp. 297-302.