Fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft replacement

Explore the fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft replacement project.

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Project at a glance

Acquiring the next generation of search and rescue planes and opening a new training facility in Comox, British Columbia
Contract value
$2.4 billion
  • 16 CC-295 aircraft equipped with advanced technology systems
  • Infrastructure and set-up activities
  • Construction of a new simulator-equipped training centre in Comox, British Columbia
  • Maintenance and support services
  • Tools and test equipment, spare parts, and access to technical data
Aircraft 2 and 3 accepted in Spain on July 31, 2020
Next steps
  • Ferry flight of the first aircraft to Comox, British Columbia, in fall 2020
  • Training and operational testing in Canada, starting in fall 2020
  • Opening the new training facility at 19 Wing, Canadian Forces Base Comox, British Columbia, in 2020

Project description

The Government of Canada purchased 16 CC-295 aircraft equipped with advanced technology systems to support search and rescue operations. The aircraft will be based in:

These aircraft are replacing the current fleet of CC-115 Buffalo and CC-130H Hercules, which have served Canada well over the last 20 to 40 years. They perform over 350 missions annually and are responsible for saving the lives of thousands of Canadians each year.

The new fleet will gradually take over search and rescue missions after the first few are delivered. The existing CC-115 Buffalo and CC-130H Hercules fleets will be retired during this period.

The project also includes the construction of a new simulator-equipped training centre. In 2017, construction began on the training facility at 19 Wing Comox, British Columbia.

The Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy applies to this procurement, requiring the winning supplier to place investments in Canada equal to the value of the contracts. Airbus Defence and Space continues to develop strategic relationships with Canada's world-leading aerospace and defence firms and will undertake business activities in Canada equal to the contract value.

Repair and overhaul work, maintenance and training for the aircraft will be performed in Canada, which is expected to create significant high-value jobs for Canadians.

Contract details

Procurement progress and engagement

Learn about the progress of and engagement involved in the procurement.


Canadian aerospace industry was consulted on a procurement strategy through an industry day.


2013 and 2014


Final RFP was shared with potential bidders.


2019 and beyond

First aircraft accepted in Spain on December 18, 2019


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