Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

January 01, 2011 16:30 ET

Arrival of CC-130J Hercules Tactical Aircraft in Afghanistan

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 1, 2011) - The Canadian Forces are proud to welcome today their first deployed CC-130J Hercules tactical aircraft into operational service at Kandahar Airfield in support of our UN-mandated, NATO-led mission to Afghanistan.

"This Government has an incredible record of providing our men and women in uniform with the necessary tools to do the job that is asked of them," declared the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, during his recent visit with Canadian Forces members serving in Afghanistan. "These impressive new aircraft – which were delivered on budget and ahead of schedule – will serve Canada and Canadians well for years to come," he said.

"The quick introduction of the J-model Hercules in Afghanistan clearly demonstrates the Air Force's flexibility to sustain vital airlift mission in the complex environment of high-intensity joint operations," said Lieutenant-General André Deschamps, Chief of Air Staff. "Our air wing operations in Afghanistan highlight the value of an agile and expeditionary Air Force." 

The CC-130J provides additional capability and reliability, and will help ensure our continued success in operations thereby helping the Air Force to meet its goal of being the "best in class" for its size, while remaining highly interoperable with our allies.

"The operations in Afghanistan clearly show that the men and women of the Air Force are expertly trained, extremely professional, and highly motivated to make a vital contribution to operational success," said Colonel Paul Prévost, Commanding Officer of Joint Task Force Afghanistan (JTF-Afg) Air Wing.

The first CC-130J Hercules tactical aircraft arrived in Canada on June 4, 2010, six months ahead of the original scheduled delivery date. The Air Force team demonstrated its agility, flexibility and professional capabilities by readying the aircraft and its crews for deployment to Afghanistan in less than seven months. Training, maintenance and operation procedures needed to be adapted to the specific characteristics of this aircraft, while ensuring an efficient and effective implementation schedule that will facilitate safe, effective, and sustained operations.

The new CC-130J Hercules aircraft will belong to the Tactical Aviation Unit (Task Force CANUCK), which is part of the JTF-Afg Air Wing. This tactical aircraft will be used for missions such as intra-theatre transport of troops and cargo, battlefield illumination, and drops of combat packages. A second CC-130J Hercules aircraft will deploy to Afghanistan in late Spring 2011.

All 17 CC-130Js will be based at 8 Wing Trenton, along with the future Air Mobility Training Centre that will house the equipment and personnel required to train the operators and maintainers of the CC-130J Hercules aircraft.

Note to Editors / News Directors:

For more information about the use of the CC-130J in Afghanistan, please contact the Media Liaison Office at: 1-866-377-0811 or 613-996-2353.

For more general information about the airframe, please visit the Air Force website: www.airforce.forces.gc.ca

Imagery is available at the Operation ATHENA 2010 image gallery: http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca

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