Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston today announced that a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) C-17A Globemaster and a C-130J Hercules are departing from Darwin today to transport an Australian Medical Assistance Team (AusMAT) to the Philippines to give support following the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan.
The heavy lift aircraft will transport the civilian medical team and 22 tonnes of associated equipment to Mactan Air Field on Cebu. Once in Cebu the C-130J Hercules will transfer the medical team to Tacloban. The aircraft are departing today following confirmation of an operating location for the medical team at Tacloban airport.
“The RAAF’s C-17A Globemasters provide an experienced and important capability when responding to disasters in our region. Sadly, our ability to respond rapidly has been called on in tragic circumstances in recent years to support missions following the tsunami in Japan and the Christchurch earthquake,” Senator Johnston said.
“The C-17A Globemaster and C-130J Hercules will be supported by a RAAF Mobile Air Load Team (MALT), an Aircraft Security Operations Team and Aeromedical Evacuation specialists. These personnel will be responsible for enabling the delivery of the medical specialists and their equipment to the Philippines,” he said.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is deploying crisis response specialists and consular staff with the AusMAT team into the worst affected areas.
This will include an additional two Rapid Response Team personnel to support humanitarian assistance, and two Emergency Response Team officers to assist the Australian Embassy, Manila with the consular response
Defence stands ready to respond to any further request for assistance.
Imagery is available at: http://images.defence.gov.au/S20132073
More information will be available at: http://www.defence.gov.au/Operations/philippinesassist/home.asp
Defence is unable to support media to travel to the Philippines.
Rebecca Horton (Minister Johnston’s Office): 0427 449 120
Defence Media Operations: (02) 6127 1999