The flight was one of the longest airlift flights and lasted about 15 hours
The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) provided a great relief for 17 people, including nine Brazilians and eight foreigners, who were in Turkey and had the opportunity to go to Brazil this Saturday (02/11), in one of the longest flights of air logistic transportation. Called by the Brazilian government on Wednesday (08/02), the FAB transported to the European country 42 professional firefighters, doctors and Civil Defense personnel and about 10 tons of cargo, aiming to provide humanitarian support to the Turkish population, which is still shaken by the earthquakes felt in the region in recent days.
On the way back, the KC-30 aircraft carried out the transportation of these 17 people. The action was coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Embassy and the Consulate of Brazil in Turkey. Counselor Fabiana Arazini explained details of the movement to bring the Brazilians and foreigners to Brazil. “The operation had the help of other Brazilians and Turks involved, who have people in the region and were able to provide support, especially with the transportation of these people to the affected area, which is very difficult to access.”
During the flight, many stories were shared, especially about the tragedy that killed thousands of people in the region that divides Turkey and Syria. One of them was that of Marcelo Filipini, who keeps a memory of love from the terror situation. The story occurred right after the earthquakes.
“We found a taxi driver, asked him to run to the airport, which was going to be our escape area, because at that moment it was the only point where we could get out of there. We were in chaotic traffic, everybody wanted to leave, the gas stations were full, in a city where Portuguese was not spoken. So I take my cell phone, go to film the traffic jam, and as I turn around I look at the vehicle next to me and on the license plate is written the name of my dead mother, Carmen. I am [Click here to download the original image] sure that it was she who looked out for me from where it is,” narrated the young man, emotional.
And speaking of emotion, the beautician Fernanda Lima explained how it was to wake up at dawn, pregnant, in the middle of the earthquakes. “When I understood that that situation was not usual, I started screaming for my husband and my son to wake up. So I pulled my son out of his crib, put him in my husband’s hand and said: run, this is an earthquake. Save his life! Leave me alone, go ahead with him! And that was all it took for us to leave the house. When we left the house we saw our house collapsing. We [Click here to download the original image] lost everything!
Besides the return to Brazil, the flight also provided new experiences for the passengers, who were thrilled to get to know an aircraft of the magnitude of the KC-30 up close. “I loved the experience, it was really cool,” said little Alicia Gonçalves Kaya.
Mission accomplished! FAB transports personnel and cargo in humanitarian aid to Turkey
Mission accomplished! Forty-two men and women from several Brazilian capitals landed in the city of Ankara, capital of Turkey, at 4am this Friday (Brasília time). A group composed of military firefighters, health professionals and civil defense took off from Guarulhos on Thursday morning (02/09) to bring hope in the form of food, equipment, sniffer dogs and operational support to those who need it most.
“It is a rescue team, a Brazilian task force, involving military professionals from three states from the Fire Department, medical officers, and Civil Defense from both the state of São Paulo and the Federal Government. Many of these professionals have already worked in Brumadinho, in other disasters nationally and internationally, they have already been to Haiti, Mozambique, and everything adds up. Our expectation is the best, to be able to help people”, explained Colonel Carlos Alberto de Camargo Junior, who is the Commander of the São Paulo Fire Department.
Besides the professionals, who will help in the search and medical care in the region that has been shaken by high-magnitude earthquakes in recent days, the KC-30 aircraft of the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) also transported about 10 tons of equipment, medicines, emergency kits and sniffer dogs, which will help in the search.
The trip was the first humanitarian mission abroad carried out by the KC-30, it lasted about 12 hours and was marked by the final adjustments in planning and the expectations of the professionals who will work in humanitarian support.
“The expectation is that there will be a lot of work, and we will stay in this function related to health, but not only health related to trauma or the situation of the people involved, but also the safety of the Brazilian team that is going to help, so that we have a team that can provide safety in case one of us is also injured,” said Medical Captain Fabiana Maria Ajjar, from the São Paulo Military Police.
With an open heart, but at the same time overwhelmed by the family he left behind in Brazil, the Sub-Commander of the Battalion of Environmental Emergencies and Disaster Response of the Military Fire Department of Minas Gerais, Major Heitor Mendonça, highlighted the importance of the mission. “The professionals who are here are with open hearts, doing a very important job, and for sure they will understand this, but we miss them very much when we are far away. And doing a good job is one more way for us to honor both our family and the Brazilian people, who deserve to be represented with the competence and dignity that our country has,” he said.
Planning concluded and expectations shared on the flight, the most awaited hour arrived. The landing in the European country occurred successfully, but with only one unforeseen event. Initially, the rescue team would go to the city of Adana, but due to the high flow at the airport, the FAB aircraft had its course changed and had to land in Ankara. At minus six degrees Celsius, both the rescue team and the cargo disembarked and, from there, went on to their final destination, aiming to help those who need it most.
“This mission is extremely important, because it represents a great Brazilian effort, a synergy between the Federal Government and the state governments to build this Brazilian humanitarian force in support of this critical situation that the population of Turkey is going through. We thank the Brazilian Air Force for the partnership and for making possible the arrival of this team in the Turkish region,” concluded the Coordinator of Integrated Studies of the National Secretariat for Protection and Civil Defense, Rafael Pereira Machado, who represented the federal government in the mission.
The KC-30, the military designation for the Airbus A330, is an aircraft with a maximum weight of 233 thousand kilograms and a maximum speed of 995 kilometers per hour. With a wingspan of 60.03 meters and length of 58.8 meters, its payload is 45 thousand kilograms.
The first Airbus A330-200 was incorporated with the registration number FAB 2901 and will be converted into a Multi Role Tanker Transport, or MRTT. With this, FAB increases its capacity for strategic actions, such as in-flight refueling, logistical support, and humanitarian actions, both national and international. In situations of public calamity, such as natural disasters, pandemics or medical emergencies, the aircraft will also be able to perform Aeromedical Evacuation Missions (EVAM) for a large number of patients. [Click here to download the original image]
The KC-30 is the largest aircraft ever operated by the Brazilian Air Force, being able to carry up to 238 passengers and fly a distance of 14.5 thousand kilometers. Thus, the incorporation of the aircraft to the FAB will result in the reestablishment of strategic capacity for the defense of the country and support for national development.
Photos: Captain Emília and Sergeant André Souza / CECOMSAER
*** Translated by the DEFCONPress FYI team ***