Astronaut Thomas Pesquet has launched an appeal by Aviation Sans Frontières (ASF) for the aviation sector’s assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The European Space Agency astronaut and pilot is an ambassador for the French NGO which applies its skills in aviation and crisis management to epidemics and other humanitarian crises. ASF is appealing for help from currently grounded operators to donate aircraft or staff.

Falcon helps with medical team transport

Falcon is among the companies which has joined with ASF to aid in the fight against COVID-19. Company-provided Falcons are transporting emergency medical teams, supplies and equipment to and from hot zones around France. Two Falcons have also been committed to support Operation Resilience, the French government’s healthcare response group with transport operations are already being carried out.

Dassault Aviation has also made two Falcon business jets available to the French Defense Ministry as part of the Operation Resilience which is intended to supply logistics and medical support for civilian coronavirus control activities.

Dassault Aviation supports Operation Resilience

The first mission, involving both aircraft, brought a team of 26 doctors and other medical personnel from Brest, Brittany back to Paris. The team had accompanied COVID-19 patients to Brest on a special medical train.

The two Dassault aircraft, a Falcon 8X and a Falcon 900, are equipped for 15 and 13 passengers, respectively. They are operated by Dassault Falcon Service (DFS), a subsidiary of Dassault Aviation specialising in maintenance and flight operations, based at Le Bourget airport. DFS also supplies the flight crews.

One or both of the Falcon aircraft can be made available to the Resilience unit of the French Air Force’s Air Defense and Air Operations Command (CDAOA), depending on the requirements defined by government authorities. The aircraft can land at small airports in all weather conditions and, without the need for ground infrastructure, the aircraft enable medical teams and equipment to be dispatched quickly across France and throughout the world.

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