Saturday, October 3, 2015

A Few Plane Spotting Photos from Gladstone Airport on Saturday - AirServices King Air VH-FIY - Bushfire Fighting Helicopter and More

AirServices Australia / Pearl Aviation Hawker Beechcraft B300 Super King Air VH-FIY touched down at Gladstone Airport from Brisbane during the afternoon on Friday 2 October.  Local plane spotter Michael F ventured to Gladstone Airport during the morning on Saturday 3 October and captured a couple of photos as it departed on a local navigation aid (navaid) calibration flight around the Airport.

VH-FIY departed further North to Townsville during the afternoon.  It was heard to be using its usual radio callsign of "AusCal 3".

About the same time on Saturday 3 October, Michael also captured a couple of photos of R-Mach Aviation Cessna 337G Super Skymaster VH-JOE which was visiting Gladstone in a bushfire spotting role using the radio callsign of "Birddog 410".

Another bushfire spotting aircraft, believed to be Tisdall Aviation Beech 58 Baron VH-PRG, was also noted calling into Gladstone on Saturday 3 October as "Birddog 409". 

Also spotted at Gladstone Airport was Lancair IV-P VH-LWL which arrived from the Sunshine Coast on Thursday 1 October.

A couple of commercial movements captured by Michael on Saturday 3 October included Virgin Australia Embraer E-190 VH-ZPK which operated the VOZ1709/1712 scheduled service from and back to Brisbane.

The E-190s continue to operate into Gladstone Airport replacing services that would usually be operated by Virgin Australia Regional Airlines (VARA) ATR 72 turbo-props.  Most days during the previous week there were 1-2 E-190s touching down with - as posted below - five E-190s noted visiting Gladstone on Tuesday 29 September.

QantasLink Dash-8-Q400 VH-QOK was also captured as it touched down as QLK2334 from Brisbane.  VH-QOK wears a small 'Recognise' sticker just behind the cockpit windows on both the port and starboard sides of the aircraft. 

Finally, as bushfires flared up nearby to Gladstone Airport later on Saturday 3 October, Michael captured some photos McDermott Aviation Bell 214B-1 Biglifter helicopter VH-SUH which has recently been based at Gladstone Airport on standby for bushfire fighting duties. 

The big Bell returned to Gladstone Airport as night fell and remains parked at Gladstone Airport on stand-by for future bushfire fighting duties.

Sincere thanks to Michael for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

All photos taken by Michael Fleetwood  ©

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