VP-47 deemed “safe for flight” with new aircraft

The “Golden Swordsmen” of Patrol Squadron-47 have completed their transition from the P-3C Orion to the P-8A Poseidon.

The squadron flew the P-3C for 52 years before switching over to the Navy’s “premier anti-submarine warfare aircraft,” according to a Navy press release.

In February 2016, VP-47 relocated from Kaneohe Marine Corps Base in Hawaii to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.

The squadron was previously based on Whidbey, from 1960 to 1965.

“While we may no longer fly seaplanes, the Golden Swordsmen are honored to return to the beautiful waters of Whidbey Island,” said squadron Commanding Officer James Imlah.

Upon arrival, VP-47 began classroom and simulator training, which was followed by simulator flight and maintenance instruction in Florida and finally advanced tactical aircraft employment back on Whidbey.

Squadron personnel completed a series of tests, drills and inspections to ensure readiness for P-8A operations. These inspections were passed and VP-47 was deemed “safe for flight.”

While preparing for deployment, the Golden Swordsmen will participate in homeland defense operations, exercise support and continue to refine squadron anti-submarine warfare capabilities.

The Poseidon is a militarized version of the Boeing 737-800 designed for anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions.

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