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Australia Retires Taipan Helicopters After Crash

Australia’s navy stated Friday it was abandoning its MRH-30 Taipan helicopter fleet forward of schedule, after one plunged into the ocean in July, killing 4 crew members.

The fleet of greater than 40 Taipan helicopters was grounded whereas investigators probed the night-time crash, which occurred throughout war-game workout routines off the Whitsunday Islands.

The plane was initially resulting from be retired on the finish of 2024.

The Taipans “won’t return to flying operations” earlier than that withdrawal date, Australia’s protection ministry stated in a press release.

The federal government stated it was introducing a brand new fleet of 40 UH‑60M Black Hawk helicopters, three of which had already began flying in September.

“The federal government’s highest precedence is the security and well-being of our folks,” stated Defence Minister Richard Marles.

“We proceed to assist the households of the 4 troopers who misplaced their lives earlier this yr, and the broader protection group.”

Australian officers have beforehand complained in regards to the European-made Taipans, citing difficulties with upkeep and getting spare elements.

The fleet was grounded for a month earlier this yr after one of many helicopters suffered engine failure throughout a night-time coaching train, forcing the crew to ditch into the ocean.