Tag Archives: AnAirforceThatInspiresConfindence

Airforce Base Waterkloof Reaches Out To South African Homeless Citizens!

Following the National Lockdown, as announced by the President of the Republic and Commander-in-Chief of the South African National Defence Force, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, the Acting General Officer Commanding Air Force Base Waterkloof, Brigadier General Jacobus Christoffel Johannes Butler tasked the Base Corporate Communication Section and Chaplain Services to identify and coordinate social outreach to homeless and needy people within the Base’s area of responsibility.

Consequently, on 01 April 2020, the Air Force Base Waterkloof in partnership with Hennops Revival (Reverend Charlie Wernich), Haven of Hope (Mr Tebogo Mpufane) and Pierre van Ryneveld Spar (Mr Joe Pereira and Frikkie Coetzee) served 50 meals to homeless people at the Centurion taxi rank and surrounding areas.

The aim of this initiative was also to educate or inform vulnerable communities, especially those around the taxi rank about the Coronavirus and on how they (community) could help to flatten the curve. Community members were encouraged, notwithstanding their social conditions, to practice good hygiene, to wash their hands regularly and the importance of social distancing. Furthermore, members were informed that the virus knows no social standings, or the colour of your skin, your gender, or your age and that it can affect/infect anyone.

The Chief of the SA Air Force, Lieutenant General Zimpande Msimang commends Air Force Base Waterkloof on a great initiative.

Information by Major Terence Vukela and Photographs by Corporal Ayanda Sedibe, SA Air Force.



YOUR PARTNER IN THE FIGHT AGAINST COVID-19 PANDEMIC

SAAF Oryx Helicopter in the Big Apple

The year was 1996,it was a combined exercise with the North Atlantic Fleet, held in the Caribbean, there after a visit to Northfolk, New York and Newport R.I.

Who would ever think the SAAF would have an oryx flying over the statue of liberty. Well that is now one of the memories of the crew of Oryx 1238 can remember for times to come!

22 Squadron Oryx

In 1996, Drakensberg became the first SAN vessel in over 20 years to visit the United States, when it called at the ports of Norfolk, Newport and New York City, which followed a naval exercise with over 25 other vessels at the US Navy’s base at Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico.

SAS DRAKENSBERG

In 1996 the Navy’s most respected grey diplomat, SAS Drakensberg would return to the USA.

The Drakensberg left Simon’s Town on 14 June 1996 and participated with approximately 25 other warships from seventeen countries in naval manoeuvres, referred to as “Operation Unitas”, the ship visited the large US naval base at Norfolk, Virginia, as well as New York and Newport. Here she is seen alongside Staten Island in 1996.

Oryx 1238 was onboard SAS Drakensberg as she sailed the seas and played a vital role in the combined exercise with other navy vessals.

22 Squadron is a helicopter Squadron based at Airforce Base Ysterplaat in the Western Cape. The squadron has operated the Oryx Helicopter for many years now, and recently took delivery of the four Westland Super Lynx Mk64s helicopters for use aboard the South African Navy’s new Valour Class Frigates that were delivered on 13 July 2007. 

The squadron was formed in Durban on 1 July 1942 by renaming 31 Flight to 22 (Torpedo-Bomber-Reconnaissance) Squadron. It was equipped with ex-SAA Ju52 Junkers as well as a number of Avro Ansons and was assigned to anti-submarine, coastal reconnaissance and convoy support duties

22 Squadron insignia

Armed Forces Day Polokwane 2020 Parade

After a quick 20 minute flight form Airforce Base Waterkloof in Pretoria in one of South African Airways Airbus A340-300 aircraft , I’m sure the local plane spotters don’t see a Airbus A340 land at Polokwane Gateway International Airport everyday, I think that was a treat for them to see us land both on the 18th February and 21 February.

Airbus A340-313

After arriving we arrived near the podium for the parade and flypasts with formations of different aircraft from the South African Airforce, the flag flypasts was up first with an Agusta A109LUH, 22 Squadron Lynx and a Oryx helicopter.

The chopper formation was then next to open the mass flypasts columns, that formation consisted of four Agusta A109s, 3 Oryx Helicopters from various squadrons from around South Africa, a single Lynx Maritime helicopter and a Rooivalk keeping a safe look on the formations six o clock position!

Next was the transport formation made up of a 44 Squadron Casa 212, two aircraft form 41 Squadron that being a Cessna 208A Caravan and a KingAir 200.Jumbo formation was up next with a 28 Squadron C130BZ leading the Silver Falcons Aerobatic Team from the Central Flying School from Airforce Base Langabaanweg along the Western Cape West coast led by Major Sivu Tangana.

41 Squadron KingAir 200 & Cessna C208 Caravan and lastly a 44 Squadron Casa 212
28 Squadron C130BZ & Silver Falcons Aerobatic Team

The much awaited fighter formations were followed by the lead in Fighter trainer of the South African Airforce of 85 Combat Flying School with five Hawk MK120s. The flying cheetahs better known as 2 Squadron was then followed by five JAS39s Gripens.

2 Squadron Gripens

After the flypasts moved off Major Geoffrey “Spartan” Cooper provided a solo display with a JAS39C Gripen, tearing up the Polokwane skies with the epic roar of the sound of freedom as our Commander in chief witnessed one of the best Gripen displays one can see on the South African Airshow circuit.

Gripen solo display

The formation of four Hawk Mk120s then ended the flying proceedings of the day with a formation break overhead the podium.The parade continued with mechnised coloums, and all other forms of arms on parade!

All images without watermarks are courtesy of the SANDF. We would like to thanks General Fabian Msimang for waiting with us media and invited guests on Friday 21 February until our other SAA aircraft arrived after a snag on the A340 that we flew to Polokwane in broke down. Your company was highly appreciated Sir!

South African Airforce Airlifts Citizens Trapped by Flash Floods in Pretoria

  On Monday, 09 December 2019 at approximately 12:30, the National Joint Operational Centre (NATJOC) activated two (2) South African Air Force (SAAF) helicopters to assist citizens stranded in Centurion and Mamelodi following flash floods as a result of the continuing torrential downpour currently experienced in the Gauteng Province.


A SAAF Atlas Oryx helicopter and an Agusta A-109 Light Utility (A-109 LUH) Helicopter were able to airlift 79 stranded people at the Centurion Lake Hotel to safety. A total of three (3) people airlifted from the hotel were taken to Unitas Medical Centre for medical assistance. 

The two (2) helicopters proceeded to Mamelodi, east of Pretoria, and successfully airlifted five (5) people who were trapped by flash floods to safety. No injuries were reported in Mamelodi. The two (2) helicopters completed the two (2) air rescues at approximately 17:00. There were no fatalities reported during both rescues.   

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