The RAF has scrambled to intercept two Russian aircraft off the coast of Scotland.
Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Typhoons were joined by an RAF Voyager in response to two TU-142 Bear F maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft.
The Russian warplanes had entered the UK’s controlled zone of international airspace, specifically the UK Flight Information Region.
Monitoring the zone ensures the safe passage for civilian transatlantic airliners and other UK air traffic.
The Typhoons, from RAF Lossiemouth, took off from their temporary at former RAF Leuchars - now the British Army’s Leuchars Station and home of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
Group Captain Chris Layden, the Station Commander at RAF Lossiemouth, said:
“Today’s scrambles against Russian military aviation approaching UK airspace shows that Team Lossie are able to respond to any potential airborne threats.
“This was the team’s first live QRA launch out of Leuchars Station in Fife, where they are temporarily based while the intersection of our runways at RAF Lossiemouth are being resurfaced.
“Now the incident has concluded we return to a state of readiness, on constant standby in our enduring mission of Securing the Skies of the United Kingdom.”
The Typhoons were supported by a Voyager aircraft operating from RAF Mildenhall while its RAF Brize Norton home is undergoing maintenance work.
One of the RAF pilots flying described the day’s events as a “successful team effort”.
“This is a very evocative moment to scramble as it is nearly 80 years on from the 15 September, Battle of Britain Day, the day that now marks the end of the critical phase of the battle in 1940,” they added.
“Air defence now is as critical as it was then.”
Cover image: RAF Typhoon intercepts Russian aircraft off Scottish coast (Picture: MOD).