ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

A local aviation enthusiast has pointed out to The Advocate that the pejorative term ‘Airbus Albo’ is actually technically incorrect because while he does use an Airbus for some overseas travel, he often uses another make altogether.

Damien Lee is often found at Shepherd’s Mount, close to the Remienko Memorial Aerodrome on our town’s southern fringe. He’s been an ‘avgeek’ or ‘aviation geek’ his whole life, he tells our reporter, which is why he hopes people take the time to actually get it right when using his passion in a derogatory sense. Our reporter joined him on the Mount as he took photos with a large camera and prepared a drone for flight.

“As you can see, the Prime Minister often travels on a Boeing 737 BBJ. Granted, it’s usually for short-haul travel. Destinations such as the South Pacific Islands, South East Asia and parts of Western Australia. He uses the Boeing. If you want to be even more precise, he actually flies on one of three Dassault Falcons between say Sydney, where he lives, and Canberra where he works,”

“However, yes. It would be technically correct to say the his is Airbus Albo when he’s flying, for example, to North America or Europe. In actual fact, the RAAF Airbus KC-30A is actually a multi-role aircraft. It’s able to refuel other aircraft, carry cargo and transport VIPs. It was purpose built to cater to the functions of government while in the air,”

“Don’t you think that’s interesting?”

Our reporter nodded then asked if he thought it was a good idea to be flying a drone next to the airport.

“I’m going to stay out of the way of the aircraft. As an avgeek, the last thing I’d want to do is hurt a plane. I only fly the drone around the apron and only at night,” he said.

“So that’s why I think saying Airbus Albo is stupid.”

More to come.


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