The Turkish air force has halted operations of its Lockheed Martin C-130B transports, pending the repair of structural damage found to be affecting the join between the aircraft's wing and fuselage. The service says the fault was discovered in four of its six 222 Sqn-operated C-130Bs after the fleet was involved in conducting firefighting flights over neighbouring Georgia, where the aircraft were required to perform high-g manoeuvres.
The air force will continue to conduct C-130 operations from Kayseri airbase using its seven E-model Hercules until the grounded Bs can resume operations, again primarily in the firefighting role. According to Flight's MiliCAS database, Ankara's current transport aircraft fleet also comprises 48 EADS Casa CN-235 and 18 Transall C160 transports. Ten Airbus Military A400Ms are on order.
Source: Flight International