RAF Typhoon jets took off from Lossiemouth in Moray on Wednesday, after two Russian bombers approached the UK.
A Voyager refuelling aircraft from RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire was also sent to support the two jets. Once the jets left their base in Scotland, the Russian planes turned away.
This is a relatively routine occurrence.
An RAF spokesman said:
“RAF Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth launched to monitor two Russian military aircraft as they approached the UK area of interest, however, the aircraft turned away and no intercept took place.”
In May, two Typhoons were scrambled when two Russian aircraft entered the UK’s area of interest. In October last year, jets from four European countries, including the UK, intercepted Russian aircraft between Norway and Spain.
Typhoon is the UK’s Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) aircraft. RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire looks after the southern UK and RAF Lossiemouth in Moray protects the northern UK.
A QRA response involves the fighter aircraft being scrambled to investigate an infringement of the NATO country’s area of interest. This may also be a civilian aircraft that poses a threat, if not sufficiently responding to air traffic control; incidents of this nature in the UK are monitored by the Control and Reporting Centre at RAF Boulmer which builds a ‘3D Recognised Air Picture’.