Philippine Air Force Writes an Open Letter

An Open Letter for Max Defense

Dear Sir,

Your Philippine Air Force appreciates your efforts and genuine concern particularly on spreading awareness to our AFP and aviation enthusiasts and helping our air force achieve its vision of becoming a more capable and credible Air Force. However, your latest article pointed out several information that are deemed to be inaccurate which might mislead your followers. In aid to your continuous search for truth, hereunder are the important information which were not pointed out in your article.

On the statement that one of the PAFs A-29B Super Tucano suffered damage during one of the training flights in Clark and Sangley Air Base.

Fact: To the contrary, the aircraft was flown for a routine maintenance Equipment Check Flight (ECF) in Clark; not Clark and Sangley as posted. It was flown by a Brazilian Instructor Pilot of Embraer as Pilot-in-Command (PIC). The Wing Commander, 15th Strike Wing to which the aircraft is assigned, sat as Observer/Passenger in the entire duration of the flight. The aircraft sustained some damage during landing in Clark. The Brazilian Instructor Pilot had full control of the aircraft and responsibility for the flight. The Wing Commander was just a mere passenger observing the performance and flight characteristics of the aircraft as part of his functions.

On the statement that the aircraft suffered damage beyond economical repair.

Fact: To the contrary, the damages incurred are all reparable. Based on the assessment made by Embraer, the structural integrity of the aircraft is very much intact and by replacing the component parts that were damaged, it will be put back to operational status. This was the commitment made by Embraer top management and it will be put into service the soonest possible time. By the way, the Pilot and the Observer did not sustain any injury.

On the statement that the aircraft was badly damaged and put out of commission for cannibalization.

Fact: To the contrary, the damages on the aircraft are all reparable and Embraer will provide the parts at no cost to the PAF. Thus, there is absolutely no reason for cannibalization. The replacement parts coming from Embraer in Brazil are ready for shipment and the aircraft technicians are all set to fly to the country to repair and put the aircraft back to operational status all to be shouldered by Embraer.

On the statement that the PAF, the AFP and DND leadership are hiding this incident from the public.

Fact: To the contrary, the PAF Leadership immediately informed the DND and the AFP of the incident on that same day. It was never hidden. The investigation by PAF and Embraer found that the Brazilian Embraer Instructor Pilot failed to initiate a go-around and prevent a positive landing. Embraer considered the event a minor flight incident that normally happens during flights. Further, per contract, Embraer will assume full responsibility for the aircraft throughout the duration of the training period. That is why during this period, all the Super Tucano aircraft can only be flown if an Embraer pilot is also present in the flight.

Point by point we gave the facts. If we may suggest, kindly refrain from subscribing to unreliable sources. More Power and we are one with Diwa, Galing, and Malasakit. We appeal to the public to support the Philippine Air Force and the Armed Forces. Let us help each other to elevate our AFP to become a modern force capable of protecting you, our countrymen and our nation.

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