RAF Brize Norton News

Military Delivers Life Saving Vaccine to Gibraltar

UK and Gibraltar-based military personnel today supported the delivery of thousands of COVID-19 vaccine to Gibraltar.

Image shows the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine, palletised by Number 1 Air Mobility Wing, loaded onto Airbus A400M ZM407, before being flown to RAF Gibraltar
Image shows the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine, palletised by Number 1 Air Mobility Wing, loaded onto Airbus A400M ZM407, before being flown to RAF Gibraltar

A Royal Air Force military transport aircraft earlier this evening delivered six cold cases of the life-saving Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to RAF Gibraltar, enough for nearly 6,000 life-saving jabs.

Having been loaded on an RAF A400M and flown from RAF Brize Norton on behalf of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, the vaccine were then handed over to members of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment to rapidly transport them to St Bernard’s Hospital.

A total of 5,850 doses of the vaccine were kept in the -70c in temperature-controlled packaging with 10kg worth of dry ice on board the A400M.

RAF A400M arrives in Gibraltar, with a NATO pallet containing 5850 doses of the Pfizer vaccine
RAF A400M arrives in Gibraltar, with a NATO pallet containing 5850 doses of the Pfizer vaccine

These vaccine will be used to vaccinate Gibraltar’s front line workers and the most ‘at-risk’ members of the Gibraltar population.

Minister for the Armed Forces James Heappey said:

“The UK Armed Forces have stepped up to support British nationals, wherever they are, since the very start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Following the RAF’s delivery of thousands of vaccines this weekend, the airmen and women, sailors and soldiers of British Forces Gibraltar are working together to get the life-saving jab into British arms as quickly as possible.”

James Heappey MP
Minister for the Armed Forces

Alongside the delivery of these vital vaccine, Armed Forces personnel from the Royal Gibraltar Regiment and other military personnel based in Gibraltar will be held at readiness to provide logistical assistance to the Government of Gibraltar in their response to the pandemic.

A400M Atlas at RAF Brize Norton being loaded with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine prior to departing for Gibraltar
A400M Atlas at RAF Brize Norton being loaded with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine prior to departing for Gibraltar

This follows a similar deployment last March, when Armed Forces personnel provided logistical support to the delivery of PPE and medical advice.

Commodore Steve Dainton, Commander British Forces Gibraltar said:

“The arrival of the vaccine in Gibraltar tonight is the culmination of a lot of hard work by British Forces Gibraltar personnel, worked relentlessly alongside RAF, FCDO and HMGoG colleagues to make this happen.”

Commodore Steve Dainton
Commander British Forces Gibraltar

RAF personnel ensure the palletised load is secured safely on board the A400M Atlas
RAF personnel ensure the palletised load is secured safely on board the A400M Atlas

Support to Gibraltar forms part of Operation Broadshare, the UK Armed Forces’ response to the Covid-19 pandemic overseas. An RAF C-17 Globemaster delivered vital medical equipment including oxygen, medicine and PPE to the South Atlantic Islands.

Working with the FCDO, the military has assisted on logistically challenging repatriation flights from a range of countries including China, Peru, Japan, Senegal, Nepal and Cuba. Military assistance teams have also been deployed to the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Cayman Islands to help with the response to the pandemic.

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