Hostile action was responsible for the loss of a UK Royal Air Force Lockheed Martin C-130J tactical transport in Iraq on 12 February, according to the UK Ministry of Defence.

“The initial investigation suggests that it was struck by an improvised explosive device [IED] similar to a roadside bomb,” Minister for defence procurement Lord Drayson revealed last week.

The aircraft – ZH876 – suffered significant damage while landing at an airstrip in Iraq’s western Maysan province, but all the crew and personnel aboard survived without serious injury. Worth an estimated £45 million ($87.7 million), the platform was destroyed after an assessment that it “could not be recovered without undue risk to personnel,” says Drayson. The RAF’s remaining C-130J fleet now totals 24 aircraft.


© Robert Jones