Vietnam sends military aircraft to Spratly Island to rescue worker

By Giang Chinh   August 14, 2016 | 02:46 pm GMT+7

The injured worker fell into the sea and hit his head on a rock.

The Vietnamese Navy dispatched a DHC-6 Twin Otter plane on Saturday to transport an injured worker from the Spratly Islands to the mainland.

On August 10, Phung Ba Hung, 38, fell into the sea and hit his head on a rock, rendering him unconscious. His condition deteriorated despite receiving treatment from a military health center on the island.

The amphibious aircraft from Cam Ranh with a team of military health officials onboard picked Hung up and transported him to shore for treatment.

Cam Ranh in the southern central province of Khanh Hoa is a strategic naval base home to Vietnam's submarine fleet and other key naval vessels.

Cam Ranh Bay holds a strategic position in the East Sea, internationally known as the South China Sea, due to its proximity to international navigation routes and the Spratly Islands where China is reclaiming land to build bases.

In April this year, China also sent a navy patrol plane to the Spratlys to pick up three workers who it said were seriously sick.

The worker being transported to the aircraft. Photo by VnExpress/Duy Khanh

The worker being transported to the aircraft. Photo by VnExpress/Duy Khanh

The DHC-6 Twin Otter is used to conduct maritime patrols as well as search and rescue operation in Vietnamese waters.

Vietnam People’s Navy in May 2010 inked a deal with Viking Air, a Canada-based private aircraft manufacturer, to buy six DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400. The aircraft has a maximum speed of 314 kilometers per hour and a range of 1,832 kilometers, and is powered by two high performance engines.

The DHC-6 Twin Otter can land on short runways, soft ground and on water.

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