Richard Drax
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Fears over closure of Portland rescue base

Axing helicopter search and rescue bases in Dorset and Northumberland may put lives at risk, the head of a parliamentary select committee told ministers.

Transport Committee chairman Louise Ellman has been backed by South Dorset MP Richard Drax for making her comments.

Ms Ellman said she was "surprised and disappointed" by the planned closures of Portland Coastguard and RAF Boulmer.

Operations are due to cease by 2017 in favour of civilian helicopter crews.

Mr Drax said he was "delighted" at the select committee's intervention and said the government would be "negligent" if it did not re-examine the decision.

  • 15 Nov 2012