A helicopter training exercise will be conducted Friday by pilots and aircrew members from the California Army National Guard, who will fly in formation around the Los Angeles Basin.

The members of the 1st Assault Helicopter Battalion, 140th Aviation Regiment, will fly a dozen U.S. Army UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters along the coast before turning inland for a return to their home station at Joint Forces Training Base, Los Alamitos, said Col. Richard Lalor, public affairs officer for the California Army National Guard.

The exercise is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m., when the helicopters will leave the base in Los Alamitos, Lalor said.

“During the flight, aircrew members will conduct recurring training in multi-ship formation flying operations,” Lalor said in a statement. “It is the culminating event of the unit’s yearly summer training period.”

The 1-140th AHB is a National Guard aviation unit which serves dual roles in performing missions at home and abroad, Lalor said.

In addition to deploying for combat operations overseas, the unit also deploys in support of state agencies during disaster response missions in California. Soldiers from the 1-140th also activate to drop water on wildfires, including, in recent years, both the Thomas Fire and Camp Fire. Soldiers from the unit also flew hoist rescue missions during 2018’s deadly mudslide in Montecito, Lalor said.

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