Dropping In For Training

Department of Defence

About 70 Singaporeans and a C-130H Hercules were welcomed to RAAF Base Richmond last month for their annual air tactical training with Air Force.

The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) C-130 Training Detachment, in Australia from April 27 to June 2, includes personnel from RSAF’s 122 Squadron and the 3rd Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Transport Battalion.

The exercise not only allows the RSAF and SAF to conduct tactical training for its workforce, but also presents an invaluable opportunity for close engagement with RAAF and Australian Army members.

An opening ceremony was held at the base cinema with Defence representatives providing briefings, including an official welcome from Commanding Officer 22 Squadron and Senior Australian Defence Force Officer of the base, Wing Commander Todd Yurkowski.

“It’s an opportunity for base personnel to build working-level relationships with Singaporean personnel,” Wing Commander Yurkowski said.

“Base-wide support will be provided by 22 Squadron airbase operations, 453 Squadron air traffic control services, 176 Air Dispatch Squadron with aerial delivery equipment and in drop zones and 37 Squadron with mission planning and execution.”

Commander Air Mobility Group Air Commodore Bradley Clarke reiterated the sentiment, saying the training would help ensure both Air Forces can collaborate closely on future joint activities and exercises.

“The RSAF’s training will be largely unilateral, but this year there are planned partner flying training activities with RAAF’s 37 Squadron and its C-130J Hercules,” Air Commodore Clarke said.

“Training of this nature allows RAAF, the Australian Army, Republic of Singapore Air Force and Singapore Armed Forces counterparts to integrate and further enhance our interoperability.”

The exercise involves day and night-time flying activities with aircraft operating at low levels, providing the Singaporeans with key training opportunities.

Conducted within airspace and drop zones that are regularly used by RAAF Base Richmond, local community support was vital, according to Air Commodore Clarke.

“The ongoing support of the Hawkesbury, Blue Mountains, and regional New South Wales communities is greatly appreciated by Defence and the Republic of Singapore Air Force,” he said.

“The success of the training detachment will enhance our two nation’s ability to collaborate and work together in future.”

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