Brigade de Sapeurs Pompiers Paris

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The Brigade de Sapeurs Pompiers Paris, (BSPP, Paris Fire Brigade), was first established in 1811. From the 1950s it co-operated closely with the French Civil Defence agency, the Protection Civile, (as it was then known). In 1968 the BSPP obtained a helicopter on loan from the Protection Civile and used it for aerial support of ground-based fire fighting. The original Alouette II was replaced by a more powerful Alouette III a year later, and by a Gazelle some time later. The Protection Civile was renamed the Securite Civile in 1975, and appears to have loaned a Super Puma for a while. The dedicated BSPP helicopter unit was later disbanded, and helicopter support is now provided by regular Securite Civile units.

Key Dates

18 September 1811    Paris Fire Brigade first established.
1968    First helicopter obtained by BSPP.
19??    Helicopter unit disbanded.

Current Status

The BSPP currently has no helicopter unit.

Future Plans

No plan known.

Markings

Special Markings

BSPP helicopters retained their previous Securite Civile overall red colour scheme, with the replacement of the service title by BRIGADE DE SAPEURS-POMPIERS on the fuselage.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

BSPP helicopters carred French civil registrations in the Securite Civile sequence F-ZBxx, e.g. Alouette III F-ZBDC.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Not applicable.

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Sud Aviation SE 3130 Alouette II 1 1968 ?? Protection Civile
Sud Aviation SE 3160 Alouette III 1 1969 ?? Protection Civile
Aerospatiale SA 341 Gazelle 1 ?? ?? Securite Civile
Aerospatiale AS 332 Super Puma 1 ?? ?? Securite Civile

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

État-Major de la Brigade de Sapeurs-pompiers de Paris, 3 Boulevard de l’Yser, 75017 Paris, France.

Organisational Structure

All helicopters were operated by the Flight Unit of the BSPP.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

Not applicable.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

The helicopters were based at Paris-Le Bourget Airport?

More Information

Books

French Aviation Bibliography – to be added

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

wikipedia: Paris Fire Brigade
Alouette III photos

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French National Flight School

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

A national flying school organisation was first established in 1946 under the name Service de l’Aviation Légère et Sportive (SALS). It reported to the French Civil Aviation Authority, which was then called the Secrétariat général à l’Aviation civile et commerciale (SGACC). At first the organisation included glider pilot training and skydiving, but as the French economy revived after WW2 these activities were left to private clubs. SALS went through a whole series of name changes until 1993 when it finally settled on the title Service d’Exploitation de la Formation Aéronautique (SEFA). In January 2011 SEFA was merged into the École nationale de l’aviation civile (ENAC), a French university that specialises in training people for the aviation industry. It thus ceased to exist.

Key Dates

1946    Service de l’Aviation Légère et Sportive (SALS) first established.
1955    SALS becomes the Service de la Formation Aéronautique et des Sports Aériens (SFASA).
1959    SFASA renamed Service de la Formation Aéronautique, du Travail Aérien et des Transports (SFATAT).
1964    SFATAT renamed Service de la Formation Aéronautique (SFA).
1976    SFA renamed Service de la Formation Aéronautique et du Contrôle Technique (SFACT).
1993    SFACT renamed Service d’Exploitation de la Formation Aéronautique (SEFA).
1 Janaury 2011    SEFA merged with ENAC.

Current Status

The SEFA was merged with ENAC in January 2011 and no longer exists as a separate entity.

Future Plans

Not applicable.

Markings

Special Markings

SEFA aircraft operate in an overall white colour scheme with a medium blue fuselage cheatline and areas of high-visibility orange on the nose, tail, wingtips and belly. The DGAC blue bird logo normally appears on the fin. The DGAC logo is carried just forward of the cockpit, with small service titles DIRECTION GENERAL DE L’AVIATION CIVILE.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

SEFA aircraft carried French civil registrations, e.g. TB.10 Tobago F-GJXV.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Not applicable.

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Beech 58 Baron ? ?? ?? USA
Cessna 310 ? ?? ?? USA
Diamond DA-42 Twin Star ? ?? 2010 Austria
Diamond DA-40 Diamond Star ? ?? 2010 Austria
Jodel D-140R ? ?? ?? France
Mudry CAP-10 ? ?? ?? France
Robin R-2160 ? ?? ?? France
SOCATA TB.10 Tobago ? ?? 2010 France
SOCATA TB.20 Trinidad 4? ?? 2010 France
Beech Super King Air 200GT ? ?? 2010 USA
Stampe SV-4C ? ?? ?? France

(Additional information is welcome).

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

SEFA, rue de l’Aviation, BP 30080. Muret Cedex 31603. France.

Organisational Structure

Aircraft and gliders were operated by individual flight training sections around the country.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

To be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

Beynes (gliding)
Biscarosse.
Challes-les-Eaux (gliding)
Château-Arnoux-Saint-Auban
Carcassonne
Castelnaudary
Grenoble
Melun
Montpelier
Muret
Pont-Saint-Vincent (gliding)
Saint-Yan

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

Not applicable.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

The SEFA had bases for gliding (Challes-les-Eaux, Beynes, Pont-Saint-Vincent, etc.), powered flight (Carcassonne in 1945, Saint-Yan in 1947), and skydiving (Biscarosse in 1953). Bases in 2010 were: Château-Arnoux-Saint-Auban, Carcassonne, Castelnaudary, Muret, Montpellier, Grenoble, Biscarosse, Saint-Yan and Melun, France.

More Information

Books

French Aviation Bibliography – to be added

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

wikipedia: SEFA

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Civil Aviation Authority

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The Ministère de l’Air (French Air Ministry) was first established in 1928 to regulate civil air traffic in France and the overseas territories. After WW2 this was replaced by a wholly civilian organisation, the Secrétariat général à l’Aviation civile et commerciale (SGACC). A small fleet of aircraft was established for communications and navaid inspection. In the 1950s the SGACC became the Secrétariat général à l’Aviation civile (SGAC). In 1976 the SGAC was renamed the Direction générale de l’Aviation civile (DGAC). In February 2005 a new sub-division of the DGAC was created, the Direction des Services de la navigation aérienne (DSNA), which is responsible for Air Traffic Control in France. The navaid calibration aircraft now work for this division.

After WW2 the SGACC established a department to manage the new generation of radio navigation aids that had been developed during the war. This department was called the Service des Télécommunications et de la Signalisation (STS), (also called Service de Télécommunication et de Signalisation). This unit used a number of aircraft for transport and liaison purposes.

The activities of the French National Flight School, called the Service d’Exploitation de la Formation Aéronautique (SEFA), are covered separately.

Key Dates

14 September 1928    Ministère de l’Air first established.
12 September 1946    Secrétariat général à l’Aviation civile et commerciale (SGACC) created.
22 October 1947    Ministère de l’Air disbanded.
19??    SGACC becomes Secrétariat général à l’Aviation civile (SGAC).
1976    SGAC becomes Direction générale de l’Aviation civile (DGAC).
February 2005    Direction des Services de la navigation aérienne (DSNA) created.

Current Status

The DGAC aircraft are used for liaison and navaid calibration.

Future Plans

No plan known.

Markings

Special Markings

DGAC aircraft operate in an overall white colour scheme with a medium blue fuselage cheatline and areas of high-visibility orange on the nose, tail, wingtips and belly. The DGAC blue bird logo normally appears on the fin. The King Airs carry just DGAC and DSNA logos by the cockpit, with no service titles, whilst the ATR42 carries full DIRECTION GENERAL DE L’AVIATION CIVILE and CONTROLE EN VOL titles on the fuselage.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

DGAC aircraft carry French civil registrations, e.g. ATR 42 F-GFJH.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Aircraft Type Total Del’d Total Active Still on Order Role
ATR 42 1 1 0 Navaid Calibration
Beech Super King Air 200GT 3? 3? 0 Navaid Calibration

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Aerospatiale SN.601 Corvette ? ?? 1990 France
Amiot AAC.1 ? ?? ?? France
ATR 42 1 ?? current France
Beech Super King Air 200GT 3? ?? current USA
Caudron C.??? Goeland ? ?? ?? France
Douglas DC-3 ? ?? ?? USA
Douglas DC-4 ? ?? ?? USA
Lockheed L.749A Constellation 1 ?? 1963 ex-civil
SNCAC NC.702 Martinet ? ?? ?? France
Nord 262 3 ?? ?? France
Sud Ouest SO-95 Corse III ? ?? ?? France
Sud Est Caravelle ? ?? ?? France
SNCASE SE.161 Longuedoc ? ?? ?? France

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile, 50 Rue Henry Farman, 75720 Paris, France.

Organisational Structure

All aircraft are operated by the Flight Unit of the DGAC.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

The aircraft home base is not known.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

As above.

More Information

Books

French Aviation Bibliography – to be added

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

wikipedia.fr: Direction générale de l’Aviation civile
wikipedia: DSNA
Planespotters.net

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Telecoms Research Agency

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The CNET was first established in 1944 as the national agency for telecommunications, in a similar role to the British GPO. It appears that by the late 1950s CNET had acquired some aircraft for transport duties. Although CNET was a purely civilian organisation, these aircraft were maintained by the AdlA and operated in a pseudo-military markings. In 1991 CNET became part of France Telecom. In March 2000 the CNET name disappeared as the organisation was absorbed into a new France Telecom organisation. The last remaining CNET aircraft was disposed of shortly afterwards.

Key Dates

4 May 1944    CNET first established.
19??    First aircraft obtained.
1990    CNET becomes R&D arm of France Telecom.
1 March 2000    CNET becomes France Telecom R&D.
2001    Flying unit disbanded.

Current Status

The CNET flying unit was disbanded in 2001.

Future Plans

Not applicable.

Markings

Special Markings

CNET aircraft operated in an overall white, or white and pale grey, colour scheme with a pale blue/dark blue/pale blue fuselage cheatline. An air force style roundel appeared on the rear fuselage. No service titles wwere carried.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

CNET aircraft carried French civil registrations in the sequence F-SEBx, e.g. C-47 F-SEBD.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Not applicable.

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Aerospatiale AS 350B Ecureuil 1 ?? 1992 France
Aerospatiale SN.601 Corvette 1 19?? 1987 France
Amiot AAC.1 (Ju 52/3m) ? ? ? France
ATR 42 1 ? 2001 France
Beech UC-45G 1 ?? 1973 USA
Bell 47G 2 ?? 1978 USA
Dassault Falcon 20E 1 ?? 1998 France
Douglas C-47A 2 ?? 1981 ex-civil
Fokker F27-200 Friendship 1 ?? ?? ex-civil
Fokker F27-500 Friendship 1 ?? 1996 ex-civil
Fokker F27-600 Friendship 1 ?? 1996 ex-civil
Sud Aviation SE 3130 Alouette II 1 1957 1992 France
Sud Aviation SE 31?? Alouette III 1 ?? 1997 France

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

CNET, 38 rue du général leclerc, 92130 ISSY LES MOULINEAUX.

Organisational Structure

All aircraft were operated by the Flight Unit of the CNET.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

Not applicable.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

All aircraft were based at Lannion-Servel.

More Information

Books

French Military Aviation by Paul A. Jackson (Midland Counties, 1979)
European Air Forces Directory 2012/13 (Mach III)

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

wikipedia: Centre national d’études des télécommunications
wikipedia.fr: Centre national d’études des télécommunications

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Naval Dockyard Agency

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The French Naval Dockyard Agency is responsible for the construction and upgrade of all French Navy ships, and also the provision of their equipment and weapons systems. For communications between geographically dispersed sites, it operated a small fleet of light aircraft from just after WW2 until 2010. In addition, a pair of Agusta-Bell 47 helicopters was used by the Establishment des Construction et Armes Navales for torpedo trials at St. Tropez. Renamed DCN in 1991, the organisation was privatised in 2003. In 2007 it absorbed the naval division of Thales, to become DCNS, where the ‘s’ stood for Systems and Services. The flying unit was disbanded in 2010.

Key Dates

1631    Central control of Royal Dockyards first established.
1852    Naval dockyards renamed Direction du Matériel.
1900    Naval dockyards renamed Direction des Constructions Navales (DCN).
1946    Naval dockyards reorganised as Direction des Constructions et Armes Navales (DCAN).
1946?    First aircraft obtained.
1991    DCAN becomes Direction des Constructions Navales (DCN)
2003    DCN becomes state-owned private company called “DCN”
2007    DCN renamed DCNS after acquisition of Thales naval division.
2010    Last aircraft retired.

Current Status

The DCNS ceased operating aircraft in 2010.

Future Plans

Not applicable.

Markings

Special Markings

It is not clear if the DCAN aircraft carried any special markings.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

DCAN aircraft had their own separate numbering system, commencing CAN1 and reaching CAN21. Each aircraft also had a French civil registration as a callsign, originally in the series F-YCZA to F-YCZP. In 1972 the callsigns were changed to F-YEEA onwards.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Not applicable.

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Agusta-Bell AB.47G-2 2 19?? 19?? Italy
Max Holste MH.1521M Broussard 2 19?? 1993 France
Morane-Saulnier MS.502 Criquet 1 19?? 19?? France
Nord NC 856 Norvigie 1 19?? 19?? France
Nord N.1002 Pingouin II 1 19?? 19?? France
Nord N.1101 Ramier I 7 19?? 1975 France
Nord N.1203 Norecrin 2 19?? 1968 France
Robin HR.100-250 2 1982 2006 France
Wassmer CE.43 Guepard 2 1984 2010 AdlA

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

DCAN, 40 rue du Docteur Finlay – 75015 Paris.

Organisational Structure

All aircraft were operated by the Flight Unit of the DCAN.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

Not applicable.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

All aircraft were based at Cuers.

More Information

Books

French Military Aviation by Paul A. Jackson (Midland Counties, 1979)
European Air Forces Directory 2012/13 (Mach III)

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

wikipedia: DCNS

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Naval Aviation

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

1910 first Naval officers sent for flying training. 1910 formation of Service Aeronautique. 12 March 1912 creation of Commandement Superieur de l’Aviation Maritime. 1925 Aeronautique Maritime formed, later renamed Aeronautique Navale. 10 May 1940 onwards Naval units operated in tactical role supporting land forces. June 1940 Vichy naval aviation under German control. 1944 French control of naval aviation restored. November 1956 major participant in Suez campaign.

Key Dates

1910    First French begin flying training
1910    Service Aeronautique established
12 March 1912    Renamed Service de l’Aeronautique de la Marine
1925    Renamed Aeronautique Maritime
12 March 1912    Renamed Service de l’Aeronautique de la Marine
1925    Renamed Aeronautique Maritime
19??    Renamed Aeronautique Navale
10 May 1940    Support to land forces in Battle of France
June 1940    Vichy France under German control
1944    French regain control of naval air arm
1955    First helicopters received – Sikorsky H-19
November 1956    Major participant in Suez Campaign
1958    First production jet aircraft delivered – MS.760 Paris
7 May 1994    Nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle launched

Current Status

The aircraft and helicopters of the French Navy are fully operational.

Future Plans

No plans known.

Markings

Special Markings

CurrentHistorical

Aircraft Serial Numbers

French Navy aircraft carry French military serial numbers which are usually based on the manufacturers construction number for the airframe concerned. There is thus no overall numbering sequence, but a numbering sequence from 01 or 1 for each individual type. For example, Super Etendard 46 shares the same number as Alize 46.

Unit/Base Codes

Until baout 1960 all Aeronavale aircraft carried a unit code on the fuselage. This was of the format number.letter.number, e.g. TBM-3 Avenger 9.F.26, where the unit was Flotille 9F and the individual aircraft number was 26.

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

False reports of aircraft on order or in service

Organisation

Main Headquarters

Service Centrale de l’Aeronautique Navale, 2 Rue Royale, 75800 Paris.

Organisational Structure

The three major components of the Aeronavale are: Service Central de l’Aeronautique Navale (Central Aviation Services), Aviation de Patrouille Maritime (Maritime Air Patrol) and Aviation Embarquee et le Groupe des Porte-Avions (Embarked Aviation). The navy is geographically divided into Atlantic Region (HQ Brest) and Mediterranean Region (HQ Toulon). Frontline units are Flotilles (Squadrons), second line units are Escadrilles de Servitude (Support Flights).

Current Order of Battle

Table of Current Order of Battle

Historical Orders of Battle

Historical Order of Battle for 2008

All-Time Flying Units List

List of Flying Units

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

See current order of battle.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

In addition to the main base, a number of smaller airports and airfields around the country which are sometimes used by the Navy.
Military Air Bases Listing – to be added.
Aircraft-Carrying Ships Listing – to be added.

More Information

Books

French Military Aviation by Paul A. Jackson (Midland Counties, 1979)
European Air Forces Directory 2012/13 (Mach III)

Magazines

World Air Power Journal No.10 p.148
Air International March 1997

Websites

Official Homepage of the Aeronavale

wikipedia: French Navy
wikipedia: French Naval Aviation
wikipedia: Liste des escadrilles et flottilles de l’aviation navale

Scramble: French Air Arms

PlanePictures.net

Airliners.net

Air-Britain Photos: French Navy

Les Helicopteres de l’Aeronautique Navale

French Fleet Air Arm

Aeroforum Aeronautique Navale

Mer et Marine

Aeronautique Navale

Alabordache

Net-Marine

French Wings

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Army Aviation

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

From 1943 several observation units had been formed with American assistance within the Free French Air Force, for artillery spotting using light aircraft. At the end of the war, these units were greatly reduced in numbers. The war in Indochina showed once again the importance of these units and in March 1953 a degree of autonomy within the Air Force was achieved with the creation of the Aviation Legere d’Observation d’Artillerie (ALOA). On 22 November 1954 these units became a wholly Army-maintained force called the Aviation Legere de L’Armee de Terre (ALAT). It’s main roles are reconnaissance, attack and transport.

Key Dates

1943    Artillery observation units formed in FFAF.
3 March 1953    Aviation Legere d’Observation d’Artillerie created within AdlA
1953    First helicopters received – Bell 47D
22 November 1954    French Army air arm officially established

Current Status

The ALAT aircraft and helicopters are fully operational.

Future Plans

No plan known.

Markings

National Markings

Current — Historical

Aircraft Serial Numbers

French Army aircraft carry French military serial numbers which are usually based on the manufacturers construction number for the airframe concerned, e.g. SA.330B Puma 1062. In addition, each aircraft carries a 3-letter code, e.g. AZE for the same Puma, which corresponds to it’s radio callsign – with letters in the range F-MAAA to F-MIZZ.

Unit/Base Codes

The radio callsigns carried by ALAT aircraft and helicopters were originally allocated in blocks to specific units, but in 2009 the ALAT started to switch over to allocating the blocks to specific aircraft types. Thus the unit can no longer be inferred from the callsign displayed.

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

False reports of aircraft on order or in service

Organisation

Main Headquarters

Commandement de l’ALAT, 78129 Villacoublay-Air.

Organisational Structure

The basic unit of ALAT is the Regiment d’Helicopteres de Combat (RHC). Each of which comprises:
One Escadrille de Commandement et des Services (ECS – HQ Squadron)
One Escadrille de Soutien et de Ravitaillement (ESR – Supply and Provision Squadron)
One Escadrille d’Helicopteres de Reconnaissance (EHR – Recce Squadron)
One or two Escadrille d’Helicopteres d’Appui Protection (EHAP – Strike Helicopter Squadron)
Three Escadrille d’Helicopteres d’Attaque (EHA – Attack Helicopter Squadron)
One Escadrille d’Helicopteres de Manoeuvre (EHM – Assault Transport and Heavy Lift Squadron)

Regional liaison squadrons are designated Groupe d’Helicopteres Legers (GHL)

Current Order of Battle

Table of Current Order of Battle

Historical Orders of Battle

Historical Order of Battle for 2008

All-Time Flying Units List

List of Flying Units

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

See Order of Battle listing.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

In addition to the main bases there are also a number of smaller airports and airfields around the country which are sometimes used by the Army.
Military Air Bases Listing – to be added.

More Information

Books

French Military Aviation by Paul A. Jackson (Midland Counties, 1979)
European Air Forces Directory 2012/13 (Mach III)

Magazines

World Air Power Journal No.10 p.152
Air Forces Research Nos.10, 11 & 12

Websites

Official Homepage of the French Army

wikipedia: French_Army

Air-Britain: French Army photos

Airliners.net

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

French Securite Civile

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The Service Nationale de Protection Civile (SNPC) was first established in 1951 primarily to aid the civil population in the event of a nuclear war. It soon possessed considerable firefighting and rescue capabilities to meet this task. With this capability it was often called into help after natural disasters and accidents. In 1957 the Groupement d’Helicopteres was created, intially flying the Agusta-Bell AB.47. The helicopter fleet soon expanded, and in 1963 the first fixed-wing water-bomber aircraft were ordered. They entered service the following year from a new base at Marignane. By 1975 the organisation had become much more orientated towards its day-to-day accident response, rescue and fire-fighting roles than its original nuclear preparedness role, and so was renamed Sécurité Civile. In 2011 a new centralised headquarters structure was created under the title Direction générale de la sécurité civile et de la gestion des crises (DGSCGC). The Sécurité Civile remains a civil defence organisation, involved in coast guard, Search and Rescue, ambulance and fire-fighting duties.

Key Dates

17 November 1951    Service Nationale de Protection Civile first established.
1957    First helicopters obtained.
1963    First water-bomber aircraft obtained.
23 July 1975    Protection Civile renamed Sécurité Civile.
7 September 2011    New oversight board for Sécurité Civile created.

Current Status

The SC aircraft are used for rescue and aerial fire fighting.

Future Plans

No plans known.

Markings

Special Markings

Securite Civile helicopters used to operate in an overall red colour scheme with a white fuselage cheatline. The titles SECURITE CIVILE were carried on the tail boom and under the nose, an Air Force-style French national roundel was displayed on the rear fuselage and the Securite Civile logo of a blue triangle on an orange disc was shown on the cabin door. Nowadays, all the EC145s operate in a red and yellow colour scheme, with SECURITE CIVILE titles under the cabin door. The national roundel remains on the rear fuselage but the SC triangle and disc logo appears on the rotor pylon.

The fixed-wing aircraft operate in a variety of colour schemes. The CL-415s uses a red and yellow scheme with SECURITE CIVILE titles on the fuselage sides. The Firecats use a white and red scheme and the Q400s a unique white scheme with a gently waving red/white/black/white/red cheatline.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

French Civil Defence aircraft and helicopters carry civil registrations in the F-ZBxx series, eg: CL-415 F-ZBFN. The limited range of letters means that registrations are re-used when aircraft are retired. The Canadairs and Firecats also carry large ‘fleet numbers’ in the range 1-99.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

Direction Générale de la Sécurité Civile et de la Gestion des Crises, 87 Quai du Docteur Dervaux, Asnieres, Ille-de-France, Paris.

Organisational Structure

The Sécurité Civile is divided into four Sous-Direction, one of which is the Sous-Direction de Moyens Nationaux (Sub-Directorate of National Means). This Sous-Direction controls the Bureau de Moyens Aeriens (Office of Air Assets, BMA). The BMA is divided into the Groupement des Helicopteres de la Securite Civile and the Groupement des Avions Bombardiers d’Eau.

Current Unit Assignments

Table of Current Unit Assignments

Historical Unit Assignments

To be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

List of Flying Units

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

See table of unit assignments.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

As above.

More Information

Books

French Aviation Bibliography – to be added

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

Official Sécurité Civile webpage

wikipedia: Sécurité Civile
wikipedia.fr: Sécurité Civile en France

airliners.net

Groupement Hélicoptères: Sécurité Civile

Les hélicoptères de la Sécurité Civile

Facebook: Securite Civile

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

Institut Geographique National

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The Institut Geographique National (IGN) was established in June 1940, shortly after the French surrender to Germany. The intention was to replace the previous military mapping service with a civilian organisation which was outside of the remit of the German occupying forces. The IGN survived the war and in 1947 was tasked with making new maps of war damaged France and its colonial territories. To accomplish this huge task, the IGN obtained a number of war surplus B-17 Flying Fortress aircraft from the USAAF to carry out a comprehensive photographic survey of the entire country. IGN maps have been continously updated ever since. In 2012 the IGN was merged with the Inventaire Forestier National to form the Institut National de l’Information Géographique et Forestière (National Institute of Geographic and Forestry Information), but keeping the IGN acronym.

Key Dates

1887    Service Géographique de L’Armée (SGA) created
1940    SGA disbanded.
26 June 1940    IGN established as civilian replacement for SGA.
1947    IGN tasked with making new maps of all of France.
1948    Aircraft fleet greatly expanded.
1 January 2012    IGN merges with Inventaire Forestier National.

Current Status

The IGN aircraft are used for photo surveying and map making.

Future Plans

No plan known.

Markings

Special Markings

Early IGN aircraft operated in a natural metal colour scheme. This was later refined with addition of a white upper fuselage and a red and white IGN insignia on the nose and fin. More recently, aircraft have adpted an overall white colour scheme with a blue fuselage cheatline and blue/white/red fin markings. The blue IGN logo appears on the fin.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

IGN aircraft carry French civil registrations, e.g. Super King Air 200 F-GALP.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Aircraft Type Total Del’d Total Active Still on Order Role
Beech King Air 200T 4 2 0 Mapping

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

The IGN was interested in operating the Sud Est SE.1010, but the prototype was lost in a fatal crash in 1949.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

IGN, 73, avenue de Paris, 94165 SAINT-MANDÉ CEDEX.

Organisational Structure

All aircraft are operated by the flying unit of the IGN.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

All IGN aircraft are based at Creil (BA110), but this airfield will close as a military base in October 2016, so a move may be necessary

All-Time Air Bases Used List

As above.

More Information

Books

French Aviation Bibliography – to be added

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

Official Website
wikipedia: IGN
wikipedia.fr IGN
JetPhotos.net
B-17 Flying Fortress

Unresolved Research Issues

It is not clear what aircraft, if any, were operated between 1940 and 1946.

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

Aviation Populaire

Operator Profile

History

Narrative Summary

The Aviation Populaire was a French government scheme to popularise private flying. The idea was proposed by the Ministre de l’Air (Air Minister) in June 1936 and offically established in July 1936. Hundreds of light aircraft were purchased by the French government and supplied to newly established Sections d’Aviation Populaire (SAP) around the country. A considerable number of gliders was also provided. The SAPs provided low cost access to flying to men who would otherwise been unable to afford it. The scheme was slow to get going but eventually trained over 3500 new pilots and a similar number of mechanics. Increasing political tensions in Europe meant that in April 1939 the mission of the Aviation Populaire was modified to that of ‘pre-military’ training under Air Force direction. There was an increased emphasis on specialist skill training for navigators, gunners, mechanics and radio electricians. In March 1940 the SAPs were disbanded and their aircraft impressed into Air Force service. The large pool of trained personnel were poorly used by Air Force.

Key Dates

16 June 1936    Aviation Populaire announced.
31 July 1936    Aviation Populaire established.
1 April 1939    Aviation Populaire placed under Air Force control.
March 1940    Aviation Populaire disbanded and aircraft impressed into AdlA service.

Current Status

The Aviation Populaire was disbanded in 1940.

Future Plans

No plan known.

Markings

Special Markings

Aviation Populaire aircraft wore the standard colour scheme of the individual manufacturer. They do not appear to have carried any Aviation Populaire logo or titles.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

Aviation Populaire aircraft carried standard French civil aircraft registrations, e.g. Salmson D6 F-APST.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used

Aircraft

Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Not applicable.

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Organisation

Main Headquarters

Aviation Populaire, Ministère de l’Air, Boulevard Victor, Paris.

Organisational Structure

Aviation Populaire aircraft were operated by numerous local Section d’Aviation Populaire (SAP), which were usually attached to the local flyining club.

Current Unit Assignments

Not applicable

Historical Unit Assignments

To be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

To be added.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

Not applicable.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

See unit assignments.

More Information

Books

Aviation Populaire ou aviation prolétaire 1936 by Vital Ferry

Magazines

No feature articles known.

Websites

L’Aviation Populaire des années 30 en France
Civil Aircraft Register – France

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.