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Emergency Landing With Howad On Board

Australian Air Force C-130 Hercules Aircraft Conducts Emergency Landing With Prime Minister And Chief Of Defence Force On Board

A Royal Australian Air Force C-130 Hercules transport aircraft carrying the Prime Minister (PM) and Chief of the Defence Force (CDF) was required to make an emergency landing at Tallil airfield in Southern Iraq last night AEST.

The Prime Minister, The Honourable John Howard and the Chief of the Defence Force Air Chief Marshall Angus Huston, had just completed a visit to troops of the Overwatch Battle Group (OBG(W)) and the Australian Army Training Team Iraq.

The party were travelling to Baghdad when minutes after take off smoke and fumes were noticed in the cabin of the aircraft.

The crew immediately called a PAN (Possible Assistance Necessary) and returned to Tallil.

From take off to landing the incident took no more than five (5) minutes.

Both the PM and the CDF were full of praise regarding the actions of the crew.

The Prime Minster said, “I am fine. I was in very good hands. You can’t get any better than the RAAF. It was a really good performance and I want to thank everyone.”

The CDF said “It was the sensible thing to do in the circumstances. I can’t fault their actions. The evacuation was done very, very quickly and efficiently.”

The PM, CDF and all on board were uninjured. The group transferred to a second C-130 and continued their journey.

ENDS

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