On 2nd April in 2005, a terrible accident claimed the lives of 9 Australians and permanently altered the lives of their families and those of the survivors and their families.
The accident occurred while "Shark 02" was making its approach to land on a sports field located near the village of Tuindrao in the region of Amandraya on the Indonesian island of Nias. "Shark 02" had been providing humanitarian support to the people of the earthquake-devastated region.
A Defence Board of Inquiry later found that the primary cause of the accident was due to a failure of the aircraft's flight control systems. This was as a result of a series of errors, and a general practice of poor maintenance on the aircraft.
Our two Directors pause today and reflect on this tragedy. Adam was in Baghdad when the news broke and recalls the effect the crash had on the deployed force. We now have staff working on a projects that are setting mandated maintenance routines for some complex military equipment and very conscious of safety and risk minimisation.
Shark 02 was part of an ADF humanitarian assistance mission. Now a decade on, our other Director, Meaghan has deployed on numerous humanitarian assistance missions throughout the Pacific. On each trip The ADF has demonstrated it's proud history of providing support to those that need it. That support continues around the world today.
Please share a thought for those deployed today rendering assistance to those most vulnerable. It is dangerous work in challenging conditions. Wish them fair winds and a safe return.