It appears that Gladstone was spared the worst of conditions with Biloela and parts West of Gladstone, bearing the brunt of the wind and rain that the system brought. Indeed local plane spotters Jamie and Tash report that the Gladstone-based Careflight Bell 412EP VH-XCY made frequent trips to Biloela/Thangool Airport from Gladstone Airport, carrying emergency services personal to the cyclone-hit area.
McDermott Aviation / Machjet Aerospatiale AS.365N2 Dauphin helicopters VH-NAR. and VH-IYS were also spotted at Gladstone Airport also operating flights to towns out West of Gladstone before later returning home to the Sunshine Coast.
And Whitsunday Helicopters' Agusta A109E Power VH-KZD and Eurocopter AS.350B2 Squirrel VH-DBJ were also spotted flying out of Gladstone Airport by Jamie and Tash.
Meanwhile, Brisbane-based media outlets have travelled to Central Queensland with Channel 9 (Queensland Television) Eurocopter AS.350B Squirrel helicopter VH-HTV touching down at Gladstone Airport. It even posed as the backdrop for a live news cross later in the evening!
Commercial flights in and out of Gladstone Airport have also resumed and it was noted that Virgin. Australia Embraer E-190 VH-ZPN departed Brisbane for the industrial city early on Saturday 21 February as VOZ1709. However, due to the weather, VH-ZPN was noted to turn around when it was approaching Bundaberg, and the Embraer soon after landed back at Brisbane.
In its place, Virgin Boeing B737-800 VH-YFL was spotted touching down at Gladstone a little later in the day as the delayed VOZ1709 from Brisbane.
While Gladstone was spared the full force of TC Marcia, Jamie and Tash still report that strong winds brought down many branches, including in their yard. We at the CQ Plane Spotting Blog sincerely thank Jamie and Tash for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos from a great day of plane spotting - albeit under unfortunate circumstances. We are all thinking of those that have been affected by TC Marcia throughout Central Queensland.
All photos taken by Jamie and Tash ©