Monday, July 24, 2023

Exercise Talisman Sabre - Six Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopters Pass Through Gladstone & Rockhampton Airports Heading to Proserpine (Whitsunday Coast) Airport

On Monday 24 July, six Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopters were spotted passing through Central Queensland while on flights from Holsworthy Barracks near Sydney up to RAAF Base Amberley and then to Proserpine (Whitsunday Coast) Airport. 

At Rockhampton Airport, five of the six called in for fuel before continuing to Proserpine Airport.  They were identified as:  A40-029 "Bushman 82", A40-008 "Bushman 83", A40-001 "Bushman 85", A40-045 "Bushman 84", and A40-040 "Bushman 86".

The sixth was identified as A40-006 as "Bushman 81" and diverted into Gladstone Airport with radio issues before it was then joined by A40-040 "Bushman 86".  Both then departed to Proserpine Airport.

Meanwhile, up at Proserpine Airport, also on Monday 24 July, the some or all of the six MRH-90s were reportedly involved in a Forward Arming and Refuelling Points (FARP) Exercise with a United States Air Force (USAF) Lockheed MC-130J Hercules.

It is believed that from Prosie, the six MRH-90s continued up to Townsville.

Of interest, the "Bushman" callsign suggests the MRH-90 helicopters are flown by the Australian Army's 173rd Aviation Squadron. They provide support to the Army’s Special Operations Command. The Squadron is based at Luscombe Airfield, Holsworthy Barracks, Sydney and forms part of the 6th Aviation Regiment.

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

Photos taken by Scott Harris and Emily C  ©

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