National Defence Bureau,
New Delhi, 14 February 2019
In a first for the IAF, the “OTTERS” squadron of Western Air Command has undertaken Parallel Taxi Track (PTT) Operations with a full women crew in the Dornier 228 aircraft. The pilots, Sqn Ldr Kamaljeet Kaur and her co-pilot Sqn Ldr Rakhi Bhandari carried out successful parallel taxi track landing and take-off operations at Sirsa. This achievement highlights the theme of Aero India 2019 which is earmarked on 23 February as the day to highlight the Achievements of Women in Aviation Sector.
Parallel Taxi Track Operations are carried out to enable unhindered operations even when the runway is not available due to enemy action or any other reasons.
PTT Operations is a challenging task as the crew is required to land and take off from the taxi track, which is considerably smaller in width than the runway, with proximity to obstructions as compared to the main runway. There is no of error during the most critical phases of flight, landing and take-off.
Shailesh Kumar is an independent journalist with over 17 years of experience in crime, political and defence reporting for leading media brands including Star News, India TV and NewsX. He is the founder editor of defence and security news portal, National Defence.