Commanding Officer of the Army’s 5th Aviation Regiment Lieutenant Colonel Jamie Martin published a couple of photos that graphically demonstrate how poor the air quality is across much of Australia’s south east this week.
CAPTION: A 5th Aviation Regiment MRH90 Taipan after a hard day’s work on Operation Bushfire Assist 19-20 duty. 5 Aviation Regiment photo.
RELATED STORIES: Operation Bushfire Assist 19-20
“This is what an MRH90 Taipan looks like after a long day/night of flying in support of #OpBushfireAssist,” Lieutenant Colonel Martin said in a Twitter post.
“Great work by maintainers to clean the machines and turn them around to get back on task.”
Lieutenant Colonel Martin said he was glad his formation could be there for their fellow Australians.
“Our Regiment motto is ‘Bold’. Our purpose is to: Deliver – Sustain -Protect – and we are proud to support Operation Bushfire Assist as part of the greater ADF effort.”
Two S-70A Black Hawk helicopters and an MRH-90 Taipan helicopter are based out of RAAF Base East Sale and have been involved in transporting firefighters around the fire grounds, evacuating injured and vulnerable people from hazardous locations and delivering food, water and critical equipment to locations where it is needed, including the Bremm River and Genoa areas.
On January 7, the ADF recommenced aviation activities, including the evacuation of personnel from Mallacoota, provision of satellite phones to cut-off communities, and distribution of stores to isolated areas.
On January 7, aircraft reached Bemm River and Genoa delivering food, water, medical and fuel supplies to both locations.
As at 8 January, four CH-47F Chinook helicopters are operating from RAAF Base East Sale to provide support to firefighting operations as well as provide humanitarian assistance to remote and isolated communities.
On January 8, rotary-wing assets were tasked to: provide communication access to Tamboon, Tamboon South, Combienbar, Club Terrace, Gypsy Point and Bemm River; insert forestry personnel onto Gabo Island; provide a diesel resupply to a generator at Genoa; and move doctors and other medical professionals to Mallacoota.