The British Army say it has been rehearsing the skills needed to move endangered people out of the way of disease, a natural disaster or conflict. 

In the exercise, an assault force from 3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment parachuted in to secure an airfield, with additional troops and vehicles following on.

According to a British Army news release:

“Soldiers fanned out across the countryside to protect citizens from the UK and allied countries, bringing them back to the airstrip for food, shelter and medical care, before being flown out to safety.

The mission kicked off the six week-long exercise, which is about testing the 3 PARA Battlegroup’s skills and readiness to serve in the Air Assault Task Force – a formation held at very high readiness to deploy by air to anywhere in the world.  Troops have the skills to carry out the full spectrum of missions, from non-combatant evacuation operations to war fighting.”

Lieutenant Colonel Mark Swann, battlegroup commander, said:

“In this exercise we’re proving our skills as the UK’s global response force; being at 48 hours’ notice to move means we can come straight into an evacuation operation without any build-up training.”

Captain Jody Harris from 3 PARA said:

“One of the capabilities of this Brigade is to carry out a non-combatant evacuation operation at very short notice.  So these exercises are extremely important as they create an atmosphere of realism to test our units.”

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DaveyB

Perhaps in the near future we will see the end of the parachute for quick insertion drops using static line conical chutes; in favour of jet suits like the one used by Gravity Industries? The problem with the parachute is the time it takes to land. But also the time it takes for the chute to unfurl and provide the correct descent rate. Therefore, there is a realistic height limit that you can safely jump. I know the Russians practice ultra low jumping, but their casualty rate is massive. I can almost guarantee that the SAS have looked at this.

IaN

Absolute rubbish. From an operational drop height of 400ft you could get 64 paratroopers on the ground from one C-130 in less than 9 seconds.

Also, the EMCON from 64 blokes jet suiting on a DZ would be rather significant.

DaveyB

Probably, but it would be fun trying though!