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A Special Thank You For RAF Personnel Involved In Op Ruman

RAF personnel received top praise in person for bringing hope to victims of Hurricane Irma and Maria

At a special celebration today, the Chief of the Air Staff thanked RAF personnel for their efforts in the Caribbean after Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Personnel from RAF Brize Norton were crucial in the relief mission, so it was only fitting for the base to be the backdrop for today's event. 

Air Chief Marshall, Sir Stephen Hillier thanked those involved during a speech at the RAF base, saying:

"There was a clear need to do something and to do it quickly, and we, you made that happen."

He then had the opportunity to talk to those who had been involved in the operation and to hear their accounts first-hand. 

Brize Norton transporter
Loading aid for the devastated Caribbean islands at RAF Brize Norton

Op Ruman saw more than 2,000 British military personnel mobilise quickly to provide disaster relief to the Caribbean islands over a five week period.

The hurricanes struck British Overseas Territories causing catastrophic devastation and the loss of life. Buildings were damaged, vital resources cut off and mass evacuations had to take place.

Aircrafts including A400M, the Voyager, C17 Globamaster and Hercules were deployed within hours to provide support, making Op Ruman the fastest tempo of air movements since Operation Herrick in Afghanistan.

No. 38 Expeditionary Air Wing (38 EAW) were deployed for the first time to organise personnel and essential equipment from Barbados.

38 EAW enabled the delivery of 75 tonnes of humanitarian aid plus an additional 1,400 tonnes of other essential equipment.