Air Trooping Arrangements

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 30th March 2009.

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Photo of John Hutton John Hutton Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence, The Secretary of State for Defence 2:30 pm, 30th March 2009

Sadly I cannot give a 100 per cent. assurance. When there are interruptions in the air trooping arrangements, the mistake that many people make is to assume that they are because the aircraft are not capable of flying, or there is some other problem, when the problems are often to do with the operational effectiveness of the defensive aid suites that are fitted to the aircraft. They are complicated systems and we will not compromise on safety. If something is not functioning in the defensive aid suites, the flights will be delayed until that can be rectified. I fully acknowledge the frustration that that causes for servicemen and women and their families, and I assure the hon. Gentleman and the House that we do everything that we possibly can to minimise disruptions. But we will not compromise on safety.

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