The DPS Aircraft Operations Division is composed of 50 police pilots, 25 tactical flight officers, 2 administrative assistants, 1 aviation financial manager, 1 aircraft communications specialist, and 1 aircraft avionics specialist. The Division currently runs a fleet of 14 Airbus AS350 helicopters, 3 of which are hoist equipped, 1 Airbus EC145 twin engine helicopter, 4 Cessna 206 single engine airplanes, 2 Cessna 208 Caravan single engine turboprop airplanes, 2 Pilatus PC12 single engine turboprop airplanes, and a King Air 350 airplane. All of the DPS pilots hold a minimum of commercial pilot licenses with instrument ratings, and receive recurrent pilot training from the Aircraft Division training staff and from the factory. DPS Pilots receive additional training and ratings, in both airplane and helicopter, throughout their careers that include Certified Flight Instructor (CFI), Certified Flight Instrument Instructor (CFII), Multi Engine, and Airline Transport Pilot (ATP). All DPS pilots are also certified in night vision goggle (NVG) flight operations and IIMC training from the factory.
DPS Aircraft Operations Division pilots are promoted from within the Texas Department of Public Safety. The Division responds to a large spectrum of law enforcement support requests including pursuits, manhunts, search and rescue, disaster relief, surveillance, aerial photography, criminal transport, domestic marijuana eradication, and border security operations. The Aircraft Operations Division supports any law enforcement agency within the State of Texas.
The DPS Aircraft Operations Division is a progressive and dynamic organization, using the latest aviation technology, equipment, and training to advance the law enforcement mission and maintain the highest level of flight safety.