RAAF fighter jets train near Bulahdelah, Great Lakes

Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18A/B Hornet and Hawk 127 Lead-In Fighter aircraft from RAAF Base Williamtown will conduct intensive air support training in the Great Lakes Area near Bulahdelah on Tuesday, March 18 and Wednesday, March 19.

Commander of Air Combat Group, Air Commodore Tony Grady said the two types of jet aircraft would carry out training activities that involved the provision of medium level and close air support for ground-based personnel.

“These activities are normally supported by PC-9 aircraft, so local community members may notice a difference in the aircraft type," Commander Grady said.

“RAAF Base Williamtown has established a website which provides communities with information regarding our operations.”

Residents living in the Great Lakes area can refer to the RAAF Base Williamtown flying program at http://www.airforce.gov.au/flyingareawilliamtown for information on flying operations and subscribe to RSS feeds for updates.

Hawk 127 and F/A-18A/B Hornet aircraft from RAAF Base Williamtown use the airspace around Great Lakes and Bulahdelah on a regular basis.

“Developing skills in providing air support for ground-based personnel is an important part of Defence training,’’ AIRCDRE Grady said.

Fighter jets operate over the ocean off the Hunter and Great Lakes coasts for 70 percent of their training. The remaining 30 percent of training operations are conducted to the west and north of RAAF Base Williamtown and other parts of Australia.

“Air Force is committed to ensuring every effort is made to minimise any inconvenience to residents living in these areas’’ AIRCDRE Grady said.

“The ongoing support of local communities is appreciated.”