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Marine One

United State Air helicopter Transportation

By OlaoluwaPublished about a month ago 3 min read
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Marine One
Photo by Daniel Klein on Unsplash

Marine One is the call sign of any United States Marine Corps aircraft carrying the president of the United States.[1] It usually denotes a helicopter operated by Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1) "Nighthawks", consisting of either the large Sikorsky VH-3D Sea King or the newer, smaller VH-60N "White Hawk". Both helicopters are called "White Tops" because of their livery. Any Marine Corps aircraft carrying the vice president of the United States without the president has the call sign Marine Two.

VXX program

In April 2002, the Department of Defense began the VXX program, which assigned the Navy to design new presidential helicopters by 2011.[9] In November 2002, the White House asked the Secretary of Defense to accelerate the development of the new aircraft; the Defense Department said a new helicopter would be ready by the end of 2008,[5] and asked companies bidding on the project to begin development and production simultaneously.

Current operations

VH-60N

arine One is the preferred alternative to motorcades, which can be expensive and logistically difficult. The controlled environment of a helicopter is also considered to add a safety factor. The HMX-1 fleet is also used to transport senior Cabinet staff and foreign dignitaries. HMX-1 operates 35 helicopters of four different types as of 2009.[17]

More than 800 Marines supervise the operation of the Marine One fleet, which is based in MCAF Quantico, Virginia, with an additional operating location at Naval Support Facility Anacostia in the District of Columbia, but is more often seen in action on the South Lawn of the White House or at Joint Base Andrews Naval Air Facility in Maryland. At Andrews, the helicopter is sometimes used to connect to Air Force One for longer journeys. Marine One is met on the ground by at least one Marine in full dress uniform (most often two, with one acting as an armed guard). According to a story told by Bruce Babbitt, President Clinton, in his final days of office, while flying over and landing in a remote area near the Grand Canyon, found a Marine waiting on the rock ready to salute him.[18] Marine aviators flying Marine One do not wear regular flight suits during flights, but rather the Marine Blue Dress Charlie uniform.[citation needed]

At a presidential inauguration, the Marines offer the outgoing president a final flight from the Capitol to Joint Base Andrews.

Security measures

As a security measure, Marine One often flies in a group of as many as five identical helicopters. One helicopter carries the president, while the others serve as decoys. Upon take-off these helicopters shift in formation to obscure the location of the president. This has been referred to as a "presidential shell game".[19] Marine One is also equipped with standard military anti-missile countermeasures such as flares to counter heat-seeking missiles and chaff to counter radar-guided missiles, as well as AN/ALQ-144A infrared countermeasures.[20][21][22] To add to the security of Marine One, every member of HMX-1 is required to pass a Yankee White background check before touching any of the helicopters used for presidential travel.[23]

Long-distance transport

Marine One is transported via C-17 Globemaster or C-5 Galaxy military transport planes (as is the president's limousine) wherever the president travels within the U.S., as well as overseas.[17] Even if, during a foreign trip, the president does not use Marine One, at least one helicopter is on standby in a hangar of a local airport or air base to depart if need be.

Inside a VH-3D Marine One transporting President Barack Obama (seated with back to camera), seated with National Security Advisor James L. Jones, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (left to right).

President Ronald Reagan and Nancy Reagan waving from the helicopter on White House

A former VH-3 Marine One at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library

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About the Creator

Olaoluwa

Ola was born 24th May 2011

He is a Story teller, Reasearcher, Poem Writer and lot more

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