Aircraft of Flight "D," 7th ARS Squadron at Dhahran Air Field, Saudi Arabia, in 1950 -- a float-equipped H-5 helicopter and two SB-17Gs, one with a droppable lifeboat attached. The haze is caused by almost daily sandstorms. (U.S. Air Force photo)
An SB-17 in post-World War II rescue markings is shown flying over Honolulu and carrying a droppable lifeboat. With radar radome instead of the chin turret, these converted bombers served into the 1950s despite their limited range and speed. (U.S. Air Force photo)
In March 1946 the Air Rescue Service was established under the Air Transport Command to provide rescue coverage for the continental United States. By 1949, ARS aircraft covered the world's transport routes.