Australia grounds MRH-90 Taipan helicopters after crash

Australia’s military will ground its fleet of MRH-90 Taipan helicopters after a crash during multinational military exercises that left four crew members missing.

The crash took place during a US-Australian military exercise off Lindeman Island on Friday night.

Australian Chief of Army Lieutenant General Simon Stuart said that the military would ground its fleet of about 45 Taipan helicopters.

Worth mentioning that even before this incident, Australian Military had announced it would replace its aging Taipan helicopters with United States manufactured Black Hawks.

This is because the Australian officials have been complaining repeatedly about having to frequently ground the European-made Taipans, citing difficulties with maintenance and getting spare parts.

Also, previously in the month of March Australia’s Taipan fleet was grounded for a month after one of the helicopters suffered engine failure during a nighttime training exercise.

However, no one was seriously hurt at that time.

The aircraft  that crashed recently was taking part in the Talisman Sabre exercise, which brings together 30,000 military personnel from Australia, the US and several other nations.

About MRH-90 Taipan helicopters

The MRH-90 is one of the most advanced tactical troop transport helicopters of the 21st Century.

The Commonwealth of Australia ordered 46 MRH90s from Australian Aerospace under Air 9000 Phases 2, 4 and 6 in a bid to rationalise the Defence Force’s helicopter platforms.

The MRH90 is a fly-by-wire, all-composite construction, troop-lift helicopter with the highest crash-worthy standards.

With a large cabin, a rear ramp, weather radar and forward-looking infra-red, the MRH90 can transport greater loads and carry more troops in adverse conditions.

Being a true multi-role machine, the MRH90 can undertake troop transport, search and rescue, special operations and counter-terrorism missions.

General Characteristics

Empty Weight: 6,400 kg

Max Weight: 10,600 kg

Length: 16.13 m

Max Speed: 300 km/h

Range: 800 km

Service Ceiling: 5,640 m

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