'Plane crash' tests air force

DEFENCE analysts are busily examining results from Exercise Broken Bronco, which was held yesterday at RAAF Base Amberley.

The major crash exercise was staged to test emergency responses at the base.

The exercise took its name from No 36 Squadron's call sign Stallion - 36 Squadron operates the large C-17 heavy air-lift aircraft, which will be the basis of the simulated airfield emergency.

The exercise was similar to those held at civilian airports and took the form of the simulation of a crashed C-17 and involved a number of passengers and crew.

From the time of the simulated crash at 9am, responses from fire services, ambulance services, police (military and civilian), hospitals and air safety officers were tested to the full to provide training and test the strength of emergency plans.

Exercises are conducted on a regular basis to maintain the air force's focus on safety of its personnel and aircraft.

Before the exercise, a RAAF spokesman said it would be conducted within strict safety and environmental limitations because safety, noise reduction and the environment were vital considerations in planning and conducting any exercises.

But to thoroughly test the response, emergency vehicles operated lights and sirens warning devices while responding.



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