Monday, July 24, 2017

RACQ LifeFlight Rescue Bell 412 VH-XCN Takes up Residence at Bundaberg Airport

Some interesting 'shuffling' of helicopters operated by RACQ LifeFlight Rescue around the Fraser Coast with Bell 412 VH-XCN taking up residence at and now operating from Bundaberg Airport as "Rescue 522".



Local plane spotter Micah S was on hand recently and captured some photos as it departed recently on another medical evacuation flight.



Meanwhile, the Agusta A109E Power VH-ZCF and both Kawasaki BK117 B-2 helicopters VH-BKV and VH-EHQ that had previously operated out of Bundaberg Airport with LifeFlight at various times have all gone is separate and different directions.

VH-EHQ was transferred to LifeFlight's Mount Isa base where it is now operating as "Rescue 400".  The former Mount Isa-based LifeFlight Bell 230 VH-XCW was noted flying into Archerfield via Roma Airport last Thursday 20 July.

VH-BKV flew into Tasmania in late June and commenced operations out of Hobart Airport.  It has also been re-registered to Rotor Safety (Skyplan Australia) based at Rosny Park in Tasmania.

And finally, VH-ZCF has been acquired by Flyon Helicopters at Mackay Airport and operates alongside fellow Agusta A109E helicopters VH-XUM and VH-RUA on helicopter marine pilot transfer operations and other general charter work.

https://www.facebook.com/FlyonHelicopters/

VH-ZCF was delivered to Flyon at Mackay Airport last Tuesday 18 July.

All Flyon activities are carried out under the AOC of Jayrow Helicopters.

Sincere thanks to Micah S for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos of VH-XCN at Bundaberg Airport.

Photos taken by Micah S  ©

RACQ-Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service (CHRS) Bell 412EP VH-EPR "Rescue 300" Returns to Rockhampton Airport

Welcome back!

After departing the area in April, the RACQ-Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service (CHRS) (Babcock Mission Critical Services Australasia) Bell 412EP VH-EPR has returned to Rockhampton Airport on Friday 21 July.  It was noted touching down from Coffs Harbour and the Sunshine Coast.




On Monday 24 July, VH-EPR was noted returning to service with Cap Rescue, completing a med-evac flight to Woorabinda and back to Rockhampton Base Hospital as "Rescue 300".

Also on Monday 24 July, fellow Babcock Mission Critical Services Australasia Bell 412EP VH-VAU, which has been flying as "Rescue 300" since April, departed Rocky for Mackay. Townsville and Cairns Airports.

Finally, construction of the RACQ-Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service's new $4.7 million facility which will house both the services primary and backup rescue helicopters with additional room for future expansion is progressing well with hangar doors added over the last week or so.



Photos taken by Kayanne Hardsman, Trevor Hardsman and 'IAD'  ©

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Queensland Government (QGAir) Rescue Agusta AW139 Helicopter VH-ESH Flys North via Gladstone and Mackay Airports

On Saturday 22 July, Queensland Government (QGAir) Rescue (State of Queensland) Agusta AW139 helicopter VH-ESH was noted ferrying North from Archerfield via Gladstone and Mackay Airports to Townsville.

VH-ESH at Mackay Airport in 2016  (File photo)

Of interest, VH-ESH has since began operating out of Townsville Airport as "Rescue 520".

It seems that the two locally-based QGAir Rescue Bell 412 helicopters at Townsville may not be operational at the present time.

Photo taken by 'AC'  ©

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Ex Talisman Saber 2017 – And a Pair of RAAF KC-30A MRTT Transport Aircraft Also pop into Rockhampton Airport - A39-003 & A39-001

It turned out to be a busy day at Rockhampton Airport on Saturday 22 July with a pair of Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Airbus A330-203 / KC-30A (MRTT) Multi-Role Tanker Transport aircraft also calling in.

First to arrive (a little unexpectedly!) was A39-003 which touched down from RAAF Base Amberley as “Dragon 21”.





After being loaded with personnel and their bags, it departed to Perth.

Then later in the afternoon, fellow KC-30A A39-001 touched down at Rocky also from Amberley but as “Dragon 30”.










It too was loaded with personnel and their bags but departed a little while later to Darwin.

Both Airbus KC-30A aircraft are two of five that are flown by No. 33 Squadron - the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) strategic transport and air-to-air refuelling squadron - based at RAAF Base Amberley.  During 2018, the RAAF will take delivery of two more KC-30As with the airframes ex-Qantas A330-200 passenger jets which are to be converted by Airbus Defence and Space at Getafe in Spain.

Sincere thanks to 'IAD' and Russell P for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

Photos taken by 'IAD' and Russell Prothero  ©

Ex Talisman Saber 2017 – A Pair of USAF C-17A Globemaster III Transport Aircraft on the Ground at Rockhampton Airport - 05-5153 & 00-0185

An exciting start to the aircraft action at Rockhampton Airport on Saturday 22 July with United States Air Force (USAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III 00-0185 making an early morning arrival.


It arrived from the North as “Trek 51” and was parked on the Northern Military Hardstand.  It looked to be spending some time parked on the ground as it was closed up and pitot tube covers were put in place.



00-0185 is flown by The 517th Airlift Squadron (517 AS) which is part of the 3rd Wing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska.

Meanwhile, after arriving late in the afternoon on Friday 21 July – see Blog post below – fellow USAF Boeing C-17A Globemaster III 05-5153 was photographed departing Rockhampton Airport on Saturday 22 July for Pago Pago but as “Trek 40”.










Of interest, and like the other C-17s to visit Rocky over the last few days, 05-5153 is flown by the 535th Airlift Squadron which is part of the 15th Wing (15 WG) based at Joint Base Pearl Harbour-Hickam, Hawaii.  The wing reports directly to the commander, Pacific Air Forces (PACAF).  It also wears the insignia of the 154th Wing (154 WG) which is a unit of the Hawaii Air National Guard, which is also stationed at Hickam Field, Joint Base Pearl Harbour-Hickam. If activated to federal service, the Wing is gained by Pacific Air Forces.

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

All photos taken by 'IAD'  ©

Ex Talisman Saber 2017 – Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) NH90 Helicopter NZ3306 Spotted at Rockhampton Airport – Plus More Chopper Action from the Last Couple of Days!

Late on Friday 21 July, Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) NH Industries NH90 helicopter NZ3306 was spotted arriving into Rockhampton Airport from the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWTBA).  It was heard to be using the radio callsign of “Warrior 06”.  NZ3306 departed a little later to Williamson Airfield in Shoalwater Bay.


NZ3306 was then spotted returning to Rockhampton Airport on Saturday 22 July but using the different callsign of “Patu 06”.


It looked to complete return flights in and out of Rockhampton Airport presumably from and back to Shoalwater Bay.

Meanwhile, other helicopter action around Rockhampton on Friday 21 July included the return of United States Army (US Army) Sikorsky UH-60M Blackhawk helicopter 12-20435 from Shoalwater Bay to Camp Rocky as “Wolfpack 11”.


It looked to return to the Bay and then return to Rocky and head back to the Bay a further two times.

Also on Friday 21 July, Australian Army Boeing CH-47F ‘Foxtrot’ Chinook helicopter A15-303 popped into Rockhampton Airport from Shoalwater Bay.  It departed to Mackay Airport and then Townsville.  It was heard using the radio callsign of “Brahman 303”.

While also calling into 'Camp Rocky' - the Australian Army Defence Support Group (DSG) camp adjacent to Rockhampton Airport - was Australian Army MRH-90 as “Destrier 11”.

Then on Saturday 22 July, A40-013 and A40-014 were heard to arrive at Rockhampton Airport from Shoalwater Bay as “Broadsword 11” and “Broadsword 12” respectively.



Both MRH-90s looked to complete several circuits around Rockhampton city with several passengers on board each flight.

Sincere thanks to local plane spotters Kayanne H and 'IAD' for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

Photos taken by Kayanne Hardsman and 'IAD'  ©

Ex Talisman Saber 2017 - RAAF Search and Rescue Sikorsky S-76A Helicopter VH-LAI Departs Rockhampton Airport For Good

On Saturday 22 July, the departure of aircraft and helicopters following the completion of joint Military Exercise Talisman Saber 2017 (TS17) continued as Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Search and Rescue Sikorsky S-76A helicopter VH-LAI departed Rockhampton Airport for Toowoomba as "Choppa 22".



It had arrived around a fortnight prior and completed several flights from Rockhampton Airport around the local area.

VH-LAI was noted continuing from Toowoomba to Armidale before finishing its journey at RAAF Base Williamtown in New South Wales.

VH-LAI is owned by Lloyd Helicopters and operated by CHC Helicopters Australia, and is one of a number of choppers used for RAAF Search and Rescue jobs.

Meanwhile, fellow RAAF Search and Rescue Agusta AW139 helicopter VH-SYJ "Choppa 27" looked to complete a med-evac flight into Rockhampton Airport from and back to Shoalwater Bay late on Saturday 22 July.

UPDATE!  VH-SYJ "Choppa 27" completed another med-evac flight into Rocky on Sunday 23 July.

Sincere thanks to local plane spotter 'IAD' for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

All photos taken by 'IAD'  ©

Friday, July 21, 2017

Ex Talisman Saber 2017 - United States Air Force (USAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III 05-5153 Touches Down at Rockhampton Airport

After one USAF Globemaster departed (see Blog post below) then late on Friday 21 July, another United States Air Force (USAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III wearing the serial 05-5153 was spotted arriving into Rockhampton Airport from parts unknown as "Trek 40".


The massive transport aircraft was parked on Gate 6 on the Southern end of the Rockhampton Airport parking apron where it was promptly unloaded and was prepared to spend the night.










The Globemaster is expected to depart sometime on Saturday 22 July.

Sincere thanks local plane spotters Kayanne H and Daniel B for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

Photos taken by Kayanne Hardsman and Daniel Bishop  ©