SAWIA S O U T H E R N A F R I C A N W O M E N I N AV I AT I O N & A E R O S PA C E I N D U S T RY
I N F O R M . C O N N E C T . M O T I VAT E . I N S P I R E
AVIATRIX PROFILES 10 AUGUST 2012 THE SOUTH AFRICAN AIR FORCE
MAJOR TARRYN BIND
MAJOR TARRYN BIND Lieutenant Olwethu Soga, left, Captain (now Major) Tarryn Bind and Captain Laura Ilunga stand proudly in front of an Oryx at Durban s air force base. The trio made history by becoming the first all-female crew on an air force helicopter flight when they made a 30-minute circuit of Durban. Photograph: Gcina Ndwalane SOURCE: http://www.silverfalcons.co.za
MAJOR TARRYN BIND SOUTH AFRICAN AIR FORCE HELICOPTER PILOT & ORYX COMMANDER Tarryn, born in Johannesburg, is the first woman to qualify as an Oryx commander at 15 Squadron; she is one of four women to achieve this in SAAF history.
MEET OUR VERY OWN ORYX TOP GUNS UPLIFTING Women’s Day today are four women demonstrating the equal competence of their sex in defence and the ministry. Yesterday, three women of the South African Air Force made history when they became the first women-only crew of a helicopter flight. The flight by pilot Captain Tarryn Bind, co-pilot Captain Laura Ilunga and flight engineer Lieutenant Olwethu Soga, of 15 Squadron, was a first in the 91-year history of the secondoldest air force in the world. The trio were proud and particularly pleased the event had taken place in time for Women’s Day and in Women’s Month. The Oryx flight took off from Durban’s air force base, near the old Durban International airport, and made a 30-minute circuit of Durban. The air force’s theme for yesterday was: “Strong women building a strong SAAF in defence and service of the nation”. Bind, 27, originally from Joburg, is the first woman to qualify as an Oryx commander at 15 Squadron; she is only the second woman to achieve this in SAAF history. “We are all professionals and we were excited. It was really quite nice having ladies only in the helicopter,” she said of yesterday’s flight. Ilunga, 26, described being part of history as “overdue but great”.
She joined the SAAF in 2004 as a pupil pilot and completed the gruelling basic training and officer courses. She then studied at the military academy and got her BMil: Defence and Technology Management through Stellenbosch University, majoring in aeronautical science. She got her wings at the central flying school, Langebaanweg, in 2007. She said: “We need more women in the air force,” adding that she was part of an NGO, Southern Africa Women in Aviation and Aerospace Industry, which aimed to get bursaries for young women who wanted to be in the force. Soga, 28, of Butterworth, in the Eastern Cape, qualified in 2008 as the first and only woman flight engineer in the SAAF. Last year she qualified to take leadership as 16 Squadron technical officer – the person in charge of all technical aspects of running the squadron. Her flying tasks have included night flying, mountain flying, formation flying, night specialist operations, sea rescues, mountain rescues, casualty evacuation, gunnery war simulation exercises, and firefighting and cargo-slinging. Also reaching great heights in her career is Methodist minister Lauren Matthew. Now 33, she became a minister at the age of 28. Now she has been elected to the World Methodist Council steering committee for the youth. Speaking on her thoughts for this Women’s Day, Matthew said: “I think young women have to work really hard to create employment opportunities and a vibrant economy for themselves.” She grew up in Durban North, determined to “be a part of something good” in the world. Today she leads the KwaMashu parish. She says she has had to be a beacon of hope to women and to a community struggling with social problems and the residual effects of apartheid. “But the people are beautiful, strong and courageous. My Zulu is terrible, but they are teaching me and they laugh when I mispronounce things.” As a career, however, she initially had agricultural engineering in mind. “In the end the urge to tell God’s story was bigger than the urge to build bridges or irrigation systems,” she laughed. By Lungelo Mkamba, Bronwyn Fourie SOURCE: http://www.iol.co.za/mercury/meet-our-very-own-oryx-top-guns-1.1114318?showComments=true#.UCE2jWybXdk
LEFT: At the Ulundi Airshow 16th June 2012 · The SAAF Oryx Helicopter (like this one of a SAAF Oryx) was flown by Captain Tarryn Bind. PHOTOGRAPH: CHRISTO CROUS.
The photograph depicts 19 Squadron from AFB Hoedspruit during firefighting in Nelspruit in 2007. When the crews approached the area, the forestry plantations around Nelspruit and in the Barberton valley were in flames. Over a period of two days a total of 186 Bambi buckets were dropped - about 316 200 litres of water. SOURCE: AD ASTRA: Official magazine of the South African Air Force - (Volume 27 No 4) 2007 - Cover art. PHOTOGRAPHS: WO2 Noel Klopper, AFB Hoedspruit
FIGHTING THE INFERNO Written by Lt (now Major) Tarryn Bind, 19 Sqn, AFB Hoedspruit
The call came early in the morning on Saturday, 28 July 2007. The forestry plantations around Nelspruit and in the Barberton valley were in flames. Firefighters in the form of ground and air support were already on the scene, but were becoming overwhelmed and extra support was needed. Around midday two Oryx and one A-109 got airborne from AFB Hoedspruit to help out where needed. The Oryx crews comprised Major Jan Meiring as commander, Lt Christo van Zyl (co-pilot) and FSgt Tinus Klopper (flight engineer); the other was under the command of Capt Henk Pietersen with Lt Charles Tarentaal (co-pilot) and WO1 ‘Fires’ van Vuuren (flight engineer). The A109 was crewed by Capt Joe Hattingh (commander) and FSgt ‘Barries’ Badenhorst (flight engineer).
(Volume 27 No 4)
On arrival at Nelspruit Airfield a briefing was held at the “Working on Fire” head office at the Official magazine African Air Force airfield and each team was assigned their ‘fire’. A team usually consistsof the of South a ‘spotter’ Incorporating the Nyala Aviation Safety Magazine
aircraft (either a fixed wing or a helicopter), which is used to evaluate the fire from a higher level and decide on which part of the fire to drop the water. The rest of the team comprises one or more helicopters equipped with ‘Bambi buckets’. This bucket is made up of a thick plastic-canvas type fire-resistant material that can hold up to 2 000 litres of water per drop. Smaller variations are available for smaller helicopters. Unfortunately, the wind on Saturday aggravated the situation and no water was dropped. In some places, owing to the smoke, visibility was so bad that the sun could not even be seen. The operation was put on hold for the day; by late afternoon it was decided to try again the next day. Sunday dawned and the fires were burning more fiercely than ever. On arrival in Nelspruit the crews were once again assigned to their fires, and the A-109 with the two Oryx in tow headed to the Long Tom Pass. Fighting the fire was not easy as it raged in a valley with tall trees on either side, yet the helicopters managed to drop approximately 57 500 litres of water on the blazing inferno below. Two hours later and after a quick refueling at Kruger Mpumalanga International they were off again, but this time to Pine Valley Plantation. This area proved to be tougher than the last, with the fire situated on a steep slope and in a densely forested area. This required slower approaches, so that the water, once dropped, could penetrate the trees to the fire below. This also proved more dangerous because of the steep slope on the approach path. In addition, because of the heavy load of water, a quick ‘getaway’ if something went wrong was not an option. After releasing approximately 58 000 litres of water and after about two and a half hours of
flying, the team returned to refuel. The last area tasked to the crews was in the Barberton valley. After the previous two challenging areas this proved to be easier, as the dam was located right next to the fire - no time was wasted flying back and forth between the fire and the water source. Over 100 000 litres of water were dropped on the fire, resulting in the successful containment of the fire in that area.
Monday morning saw the departure of fresh crews to Nelspruit, comprising Lt Col Stefan Matthee (commander), Lt Johan Stander (co-pilot), Lt Tarryn Bind (co-pilot) and FSgt Vince van de Venter (flight engineer) for the Oryx, and Capt Marius de Jager and FSgt ‘Barries’ Badenhorst on the A-109. Another Oryx from 17 Squadron in Pretoria also flew in to assist and its crew comprised Capt Stephan King (commander), Maj Louis Pretorius (co-pilot), FSgt ‘Tallies’ Taljaard and FSgt George Sales. With the A-109 as spotter once again, the teams were sent to the Senteiko Plantation in the Barberton valley. In two hours approximately 78 000 litres of water were dropped - this despite one of the Oryx’s having slight technical difficulties with its Bambi bucket. After refueling the crews were called back to the Senteiko Plantation as the fire was worsening. Difficulties were compounded by the wind, which varied so much that the line of fire that the water was meant to be dropped on could not be seen at times because of the dense smoke. The crews persevered, however, and managed to drop approximately 34 000 litres in just under two hours. A total of 186 Bambi buckets were dropped over the two days: about 316 200 litres of water. On Thursday, 2 August, two Oryx’s from 19 Squadron departed once again to fight the fires in the Sabie, Graskop and Nelspruit areas. The crews were Maj Jan Meiring, Lt Khuliso Tshiololi and FSgt Vince van de Venter, as well as Capt Henk Pietersen, Capt Paul Bester and FSgt Jason Buglass. Their first fire was at “In die Diepte”, near Graskop. 31 Bambi buckets were dropped with approximately 52 000 litres of water. That same day they were tasked to fight at Bromdal and dropped 37 buckets on that fire, totaling 62 900 litres of water. The two Oryx’s flew a total of 6 hours that day. Friday dawned and the Oryx’s were sent to the Sabie area. However, all did not go as planned as one Oryx was diverted to evacuate some firefighters that had been caught in a runaway fire and were trapped! Five firefighters were badly burned and, once they were stabilised, they were air-lifted to the Nelspruit MediClinic. Three were discharged the same day, and two remained in High Care until the next day. Meanwhile, the remaining Oryx kept up the fight against the fires. Sabie proved problematic as the fire was burning along a steep escarpment, and the wind, as Murphy would have it, was burning down the slope, making visibility very bad. They managed to drop 13 buckets before being diverted to Bromdal again. Here they dropped 21 buckets, totaling 35 700 litres of water. After refueling the two Oryx’s once again joined forces and were sent to the Crocodile River Gorge. Fortunately this was a relatively flat area, but the visibility was poor with all the smoke. 73 000 litres of water were dropped in this area. In total the South African Air Force team dropped over half a million litres of water in their contribution to the firefighting effort - not counting the amount of water dropped by civilian support. According to Working on Fire, there were over 25 aerial crews involved in the firefighting. The Air Force involvement was part of the bigger operation, with many other crews and aircraft operating in the area. It is thanks to the teamwork showed by all involved that many fires were contained successfully. SOURCE: http://www.af.mil.za/news/2007/158.htm
PHOTOGRAPH: CHRISTO CROUS
AERIAL GUARDIANS 15 SQUADRON: SAAF TRANSPORT & UTILITY The Squadron is unique both in its location as well as its aircraft types. The Squadronâ€™s area of responsibility includes a maritime obligation to the Kwazulu-Natal coast as well as a high altitude rescue capability serving the Drakensberg mountain range. In between is a vast expanse of rural settlement almost constantly in a state of unrest. 15 Squadron, along with the SAPS and SA Army are involved in maintaining control over this volatile situation by continuously doing drug and weapon raids in the affected areas. As a result of this 15 Sqn is considered to be the most operationally utilized helicopter Squadron in the SAAF. It is not uncommon for aircraft to return after one of these week-long trips having done in excess of 100 landings. The hilly terrain and hot conditions in these areas provide 15 Sqnâ€™s crews with highly valued experience. The Squadron is committed to operational readiness, and as such conducts regular training exercises with various civilian rescue and medical organizations. These include the NSRI, MCSA, EMRS KZN, and Netcare 911.
HISTORY Now stationed at Durban International Airport this chopper Squadron is synonymous in Kwa-Zulu Natal with daring feats of bravery in the air. The record books are filled with numerous newspaper cuttings of dangerous rescues of people from raging seas and wild wind-swept mountain peaks. The story starts in 1939 when the Squadron was hastily formed after the outbreak of World War II, active service started with patrols being flown in co-operation with the Royal Navy. Early missions included the unsuccessful search for the German pocket battle ship Graf Spee and later the discovery and interception of the liner Watussi whose crew, on seeing the planes, immediately scuttled the ship to prevent her from falling into allied hands. As the war progressed the Squadron was moved to Italian East Africa, Aden and then Egypt where Blenheim Mk IV bombers were flown. In April 1942 a detachment of the Squadron flying reconnaissance operations from the famous Kufra Oasis in Western Desert saw tragedy strike. Three Blenheims out on a mission lost their bearings over the featureless desert ran out of fuel and eventually force landed in the sea of sand; only one man made it back to civilisation.
The Squadron continued to change bases, roles and aircraft throughout the war and in October 1942 while flying Bisleys joined forces with RAF Beauforts and Beaufighters on a shipping strike against an Axis convoy, desperately trying to get supplies to the Afrika Korps, which were engaged in the battle of El Alamein. The allied aircraft locked into battle with the Luftwaffe fighters and enemy ships. Only a few of 15 Sqn Bisleys survived, however in the process they did succeed in destroying the strategic 9000 ton fuel tanker Praserpina carrying sorely needed fuel for the Axis forces. Later a number of South African pilots were decorated for their part in the assault. Another thrilling period of service was the time spent on anti-submarine patrols off Cyprus. Besides anti-submarine patrols the Squadron went on reconnaissance and bombing raids against Crete and targets on the Aegean Sea. Often while on these sorties the small Baltimore formations crossed swords with the aggressive Luftwaffe fighters. Eventually the Squadron ended up over Italy in support of the 84th Army. After being disbanded in 1945 the Squadron was not seen again until 1968 when in February of that year it was reformed at Swartkop air base flying the newly acquired French built Super Frelons, the air force’s largest helicopter. After being split up, “A” Flight at AFB Swartkop and “B” Flight at AFB Bloemspruit, the Squadron moved to Louis Botha, Durban Airport in 1981, where the pilots also started flying the Aerospatiale Alouette III. To deal with the wide variety of tasks assigned to the Squadron the two types of helicopters were necessary. The Super Frelon was a short/medium range tactical helicopter, which was capable of carrying 27 fully equipped soldiers and had the power to lift a variety of equipment such as landrovers and smaller helicopters. Its large interior made it an ideal “casevac” aircraft. Affectionately referred to as “Putco” by those who flew it, the helicopter has been involved in numerous unusual missions in Natal, such as dragging whales back into the ocean, attempting to lift a downed Sikorsky helicopter from the ocean and rescuing
In the air force no mission receives greater priority than the mission of mercy. When lives are at stake all resources available are dedicated to the task. Aircrew, ground crew, paramedics, doctors, mountaineers, navy divers, policemen and trained civilian volunteers are rapidly organized into a rescue team and dispatched with all haste to the disaster scene. This requires training, preparedness, dedication, determination and courage. Rescue missions are often flown in weather conditions that would normally ground all aircraft. Scenarios are as diverse as high-rise fires, mountain, flood and maritime rescues, to white-outs in the snows of Antarctica. Among the many courageous missions conducted by the South African Air Force (SAAF) search and rescue missions, both military and civilian, is the remarkable and heart-warming rescue missions during the devastating floods of 2000 in Mozambique (LEFT), which captured the world’s attention. SOURCE: http://cdn.pixpasites.com/images/ karelprinsloo_49_724766.jpg PHOTOGRAPHS: KAREL PRINSLOO
moribund crocodiles from Lake St Lucia when the water became too saline. Its rescue missions included the plucking of 58 stranded Basutos who faced certain death in the snow-covered mountains of Lesotho. The gargantuan helicopter was retired in 1990, but the Squadron continued to operate Alouette III and Puma helicopters. The Alouette III, probably one of the best known helicopters, is extremely versatile and reliable. This is borne out by the fact that is involved in active service with more than 40 air forces throughout the world. The likeable little chopper played an incalculable role in the Rhodesian War. Able to accommodate five passengers besides the engineer and pilot the aircraft has a maximum range of 540km and top speed of 210km/h. In Kwa-Zulu Natal the “Alo” was involved with the police, forestry department, anti-shark measures board and mountain club to name a few. After the integration of the homeland defence forces into the SAAF in 1994, the LTS 650 powered BK117 aircraft, formerly in service with the TBVC states, replaced 15 Squadrons Alouette IIIs. These aircraft are employed for search and rescue, command and control, communications, ambulance and many other utility tasks. In their standard configuration for single pilot operation these helicopters can carry up to seven passengers or two stretcher patients and two paramedics. They can also be configured to carry nine fully kitted troops, but are seldom used in this configuration due to operating close to the weight restrictions of the aircraft. Two big clamshell doors which open at the back of the fuselage allow for easy loading of stretchers or cargo. Since 2003 these aircraft have been upgraded and are now equipped with 750hp engines. In 1995 the unit began replacing it’s Pumas with the locally designed and built Oryx MLH. The Oryx is a multi-role helicopter, which was designed to handle the harsh conditions and varied topography of Sub-Saharan Africa. These aircraft are used for medium to heavy transport and communications flights, task force rapid deployment operations, fire fighting, and search and rescue missions.
HONOURS AND ACHIEVEMENTS > > > > > > > > > > > >
Flood relief in Kwa-Zulu Natal during the 1987 floods. Oceanos sea rescue in August 1991. Shin-Kakogwa Maru sea rescue off the Mozambique coast in June 1994. Ocean Plume sea rescue in August 1995. Drakensberg snow rescues in July 1996. Calarassi sea rescue in June 1997. Aster sea rescue near Port St Johns in November 1997. High Rise building rescue in Commercial street in February 1998. Golden Union sea rescue off the Wild Coast in March 1998. Operation Boleas (Lesotho) in 1998. Mozambique floods in 1997, 2000 and 2001. During the 2000 Mozambique floods 14 300 people were rescued of which 15 Squadron rescued 7210 people and moved 2800 tons of food.
The Squadron was also awarded the William J Kossler award in Washington DC. This award is given for, “the greatest achievement in the practical application or operation of rotary wing aircraft, the value of which has been demonstrated by actual service in the preceding year.” > The sea rescue of the Sagittarius and the Nino near East London in July 2002. These 2 rescues were performed on the same day! > The mountain rescue of stranded hikers at Sani Top in the Drakensberg in July 2002. The rescue got much publicity over the fact that the stranded hikers used tomato sauce to mark out a LZ for the Oryx. All Gold even used it in an advertisement that ran shortly afterward. SOURCE: http://www.af.mil.za/bases/afb_durban/15sqn.htm
22 SQUADRON: SAAF SEARCH AND RESCUE In the absence of specialised helicopter squadrons, Search and Rescue has become an “over and above” role for 22 Squadron due to budgetary constraints of the South African Air Force . In addition to conventional military support to the Army, Navy and Special Forces, the following also falls within the squadron’s scope of operations: Mountain Rescue; Air-Sea Rescue; Ship-borne helicopter support to the SA Navy and Hydrographer; Heli Aerial Fire Fighting; Crime Prevention; Support to SA National Antarctic Programme - Antarctica, Gough & Prince Edward Is and Flood relief and similar humanitarian roles
HISTORY On 1 July 1942, 22 Torpedo Bomber Reconnaissance Squadron was formed in Durban out of the then 37 Coastal Flight. It was assigned role of coastal reconnaissance, ASR operations, convoy escort and anti-submarine patrols. It was equipped with the SAAF’s militarised Junkers (JU-86) airliners. In August 1942 the Squadron was re-equipped with 8 Lockheed Ventura aircraft, with the new aircraft came 22 Squadron’s first war time success when a Vichy French Ship a Nazi-Germany calibrator, was captured. The years 1942-43 were occupied with anti submarine activities over the Indian Ocean, initially patrolling the Mozambique Channel. The Squadron’s number of aircraft was increased to 23 to cope with the demands. In July 1944 the Squadron was relocated to Gibraltar till June 1944. It was here that the Squadron played a major role in the anti-submarine patrols. During this period 3 aircraft where lost in operations. Day and Night patrols were flown, some lasting up to 9 hours. After two further moves to Gianadis and Idku the Squadron was disbanded on 24 October 1945.
POST WORLD WAR II 22 Squadron was revived on 1 January 1954 but was to operate as 22 Flight. Varied tasks, once again operating Venturas, were carried out before the Flight was again disbanded in 1958. Upon the arrival of the Westland Wasp maritime helicopters to operate aboard the Navy’s President Class Frigates, a unit known as 22 Flight was formed on 1 January 1964. This later was changed to 22 Squadron in May 1976. March 1966 saw the first of many trips for the Squadron to the different Islands, which are manned by the Department of Environmental Affairs. These early visits were carried out aboard the SAS RSA. The first crew to operate aboard a Navy ship were Capt’s Van der Lith and Van der Berg, Lt Schimmel, F Sgt Hammond, Air Cpl Hecker and Leading Air Mech Wolbeek. This ship was the SAS Simon van der Stel. Exercises with the NSRI have been taking place since 1966 on PHOTOGRAPH SOURCE: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/35/Oryx_helicopter.jpg
PHOTOGRAPH SOURCE: http://www.af.mil.za/ bases/afb_ysterplaat/22sqn.htm
a regular basis and have contributed to the success of many Search and Rescue operations. The first of many ship rescues took place on the 3rd of May 1968 when 14 people where rescued from the Phyllisia and then days later the well-known rescue of people off the stricken SA Seafearer. The Alouette III helicopter came on strength in 1978. From this time onwards the Unit has been in operation at AFB Ysterplaat. The 70s was a period during which there where a number of firsts. The Squadron won the first Chopper competition in Bloemfontein in 74 & 75, and was part of the crew to visit the USA aboard the SAS President Kruger. Marion Island was visited for the first time aboard the SAS Protea. This period also saw the delivery of the then new Alouette III helicopters to the Squadron in 1978. The 80s started slowly but in January 1981 the Laingsburg floods changed all this when the Squadron was called upon to assist in the rescue and relief of the flood victims. The sinking of SAS President Kruger again saw the Squadron spring into action when crew of the stricken ship where plucked from the sinking ship by a helicopter of the Squadron in February 1982. 1983 is particularly memorable with the Squadron receiving the Freedom of both Hermanus and Cape Town and then the presentation of the Colours in September of that year. 1984 was marked by the fires on Table Mountain and the rescue of Mr Graham Clark from Marion Island. The Squadron’s 21st year of existence was celebrated in September of 1985. The remainder of the decade calumniated with withdrawal from service of the Westland Wasp helicopters, a visit to Chile aboard the SAS Drakensberg and fires again on Table Mountain.
POST 1994 The 1990’s were a time of change for both the country as well as the Squadron. The Wasp helicopter was phased out in 1990 and the 30 Squadron Pumas were absorbed upon the disbanding of 30 Squadron on 31 December 1991. 1992 saw the amalgamation of 22 and 30 Squadron’s to form a single Unit known as 22 Squadron equipped with Alo III and Puma helicopters. The Oceanos sank in 1991 when 30 Squadron was operational, but the award for Humanitarian services from Sikorsky was only presented in 1992 and 22 Squadron accepted the award as it was the new home of the Pumas. This year also saw the Squadron assist with the rescue of the penguins from Dyer Island after an oil spill. May 93 was the 50 year commemoration of D-Day and 22 Squadron was privileged to attend this celebration as part of the fleet review. The next year was again a Friendship cruise to Scotland and Europe and part of this trip was to celebrate the re-instatement of South Africa into the Commonwealth and showing the new flag. The new SANAE IV base was opened in February 1997 and 22 Squadron was a proud participant to the building of this new facility. In June of 1998 the Squadron received its Oryx M2 Helicopters, which were specially equipped to fly in the sub-zero conditions of the
Antarctic and neighbouring islands. That year in August was also the time when the last Puma helicopter fly-past was done. This ended an era and the Puma’s replacement, the Oryx, was finally in place throughout the SAAF. The year 2000 got off to a hectic pace with the biggest fires the Western Cape had ever seen. This inferno was followed by the floods in Mozambique, during which the Squadron was able to assist in relief efforts. In the past two years we have rescued two fishermen from Gough Island, a Norwegian in the Antarctic and two weathermen from Marion Island. When the Ikan Tanda ran aground off Scarborough, the Squadron rescued the crew in extremely difficult conditions again distinguishing itself as a world leader in the field of Aviation and Maritime Operations. 22 Squadron was once again in the spotlight at the end of 2002, with the dramatic rescue of 89 Russian scientists and German crew off the ice-bound Magdalena Oldendorff in Antarctic. For this brave rescue, both the flight crews of that operation received awards from the Ambassador of the Russian Federation in South Africa, Mr AndreI A. Kushakov on 13 February 2003. Proud “firsts” for 22 Squadron: > First helicopter landing on Bouvet Eiland in 1966. > Members honoured in 1970 for taking part in the search of the Department of Transport personnel on Gough Island. > Rescueing 2 crewmembers of the barge, Shir Yib, which ran to ground at Cape Point in July 1970. > First SAAF flight crew to land on Tristan da Cunha in 1972. > A single helicopter helped with the transport of building material from a ship to Marion Island in 1974, in close co-operation with the SA Navy and the Department of Public Works. > Rescuing of 26 crewmembers off the Japanese fishing trawler, Ken Maro, which sank in 1978 on the Coast of the Death on the Namibian Coastline. > During 1976, the Squadron was again responsible for the first participation, whilst operating from the SAS Protea on a research mission, in conjunction with the Department of Sea Fisheries: >> First SAAF aircraft to operate over the Pacific Ocean. >> First SAAF aircraft to fly around Cape Horn. >> First SAAF aircraft to operate in Antarctica. > A mission to Antarctica on the SA Agulhas with two Wasp helicopters in 1980. > Rescue tasks and other services during the Laingsburg floods in 1981. > Many other rescue tasks and co-operation with other organisations, like the Parks Board, the Cape Fire Services, Metro Rescue Unit, Civil Protection units, the local Mountain Club, South African Police Riot Squad and other civil organisation and all armed forces.
22 Squadron has an outstanding record in the South African Air Force helicopter competitions. Of the four competitions held to date, 22 Squadron has won three, demonstrating the dedication and effectiveness of the personnel. SOURCE: http://www.af.mil.za/bases/afb_ysterplaat/22sqn.htm
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MAJOR TARRYN BIND SOUTH AFRICAN AIR FORCE HELICOPTER PILOT & ORYX COMMANDER Tarryn, born in Johannesburg, is the first woman to qualify as a...