SAC C-17 Fleet reaches 12.000 flying hours

20 November 2013

Approximately six and a half months after reaching the significant milestone of 10,000 flying hours, the multinational, operational arm of the Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC) Initiative, the Heavy Airlift Wing (HAW), has exceeded a total flying time of 12,000 flying hours. This mark was passed on a combined Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian mission on Wednesday 13 November 2013.

Since its launch in July 2009, the Heavy Airlift Wing has carried out over 840 missions delivering over 36,220 tons (79.9 million pounds) of cargo and carrying over 47,000 passengers with the fleet of three Boeing C-17 Globemaster III long range cargo jets. These aircraft are owned by the NATO Airlift Management (NAM) Programme and acquired, managed and supported by the NAM Programme Office as an integral part of the NATO Support Agency. The HAW declared Full Operational Capability in November 2012. Until today, the HAW has flown over 2,800 hours in 2013 and is expected to reach 3,165 annual flying hours in December, meeting the target set by the SAC member nations. To improve the hub function of its Main Operating Base, Pápa Air Base in Hungary, an Interim Cargo Facility is set up and the SAC Nations have agreed to build a multipurpose C-17 size hangar in 2016 with permanent solutions for back shops, warehouses, and HAW /NAM Programme offices.

Under the SAC Initiative the HAW and the NAM Programme jointly deliver strategic airlift capability required for national operations of the participating nations, including those in support of NATO, UN and EU commitments. Its main location is Pápa Air Base, Hungary and it has footprints in Capellen, Luxembourg and in Dayton (OH), United States. The SAC Nations consist of the NATO members Hungary, Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovenia and the United States and NATO Partnership for Peace nations Finland and Sweden.