Urgently required vehicles and equipment have been delivered to Pointe-à-Pitre on the French Island of Guadeloupe aboard a Royal Air Force C-17 Globemaster transport aircraft.
Following a request for assistance from French President Emmanuel Macron the heavy-lift aircraft flew to Évreux-Fauville Air Base west of Paris and collected 30 tonnes of equipment and supplies including a tipper truck, digger and specialist bulldozer. The vehicles will now be taken by sea to the island of St Martin which sustained severe damaged in Hurricane Irma.
The pilot of the 99 Squadron C-17 was Flight Lieutenant Mark Shepherd. He said:
“We work regularly with the French military transporting freight from France to Western Africa in support of their operations there. The level of cooperation between us and the French on this task has been excellent and this has been reflected in how smoothly the transport of this urgently required equipment has been achieved.
As ever it has been a pleasure to work with our French colleagues and to help the people affected by Hurricane Irma.”
The UK and French Armed Forces maintain a close relationship and are currently deployed together in NATO, fighting against Daesh in Iraq and Syria and training together across the globe.
The RAF air transport fleet continues to directly support the UK aid effort with further C-17s, A400M Atlas, C-130J Hercules and Voyager aircraft transporting personnel, aid and equipment to the Caribbean and between the islands struck by the hurricane.