Sunday, October 11, 2015

RAAF Search and Rescue (CHC Helicopters) Sikorsky S-76A VH-HRP "Choppa 3" at Gladstone and Mackay Airports Heading North

Local plane spotter Michael F enjoyed a quick trip to Gladstone Airport on Sunday 11 October and captured a couple of great photos of Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Search and Rescue (CHC Helicopters) Sikorsky S-76A VH-HRP "Choppa 3" as it passed through heading North to Townsville.

"Choppa 3" flew in from the South, and after taking on fuel, it departed North to Mackay Airport.  From Mackay it flew onwards to Townsville where I believe it will be supporting  RAAF F/A-18 Hornets from Number 3 Squadron and PC-9 aircraft from Number 4 Squadron which are participating in the RAAF's Exercise Black Dagger.

Exercise Black Dagger is a field training exercise that is being held at RAAF Base Townsville and surrounding airspace over the next couple of weeks starting on Monday 12 October.  Exercise Black Dagger is the culmination of Number 55 Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) course designed to produce combat-ready JTAC-qualified personnel.

Meanwhile, VH-HRP joined McDermott Aviation Bell 214B-1 Biglifter helicopter VH-SUH on the ground at Gladstone Airport which remains parked, presumably on stand-by for any bushfire fighting efforts.

Thanks mate!

All photos taken by Michael Fleetwood  ©

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