Yesterday, a CC-130H Hercules was seen circling the city and then the Sault Airport.
We were able to capture the aircraft in the middle of a training exercise out at Sault Ste. Marie Airport. They were seen dropping two Search and Rescue Technicians over airport property before landing.
They retrieved their crew members on the ground and returned back to Canadian Forces Base Trenton. At no point did the Technicians appear to interact with any locals and no aircrew were seen leaving the aircraft while in Sault Ste. Marie.
Capt Marie-Eve Bilodeau, from 8 Wing Canadian Forces Base Trenton, was able to provide us with some insight on this mission and why they were flying low.
“Aircraft that are participating in search and rescue activities need to fly low in order to locate and provide assistance to people that might experience distress. They sometimes move at slower speeds and circle an area more than once,” said Bilodeau. “Yesterday, the exercise included Search and Rescue technicians parachuting, this training is essential to respond efficiently to any type of emergency situation and be ready to save lives.”
She told SaultOnline the central region goes from east of Québec city to the border between Alberta and British Columbia and north to the North Pole. Last year they conducted on average 393 Search and Rescue missions in their area.
“These missions are in response to distress calls and are often life-saving. Training for these missions is essential for maintaining the skill of aircrews so they are ready to safely execute their missions alongside search and rescue partners,” said Bilodeau.
Stay with SaultOnline as we bring you more information on military operations in and around the Sault.