New Flying Doctor livery takes to the skies

After months of extensive work, the Royal Flying Doctor Service (South Eastern Section) (RFDSSE) is proud to reveal its first aircraft with a new national livery.

The organisation will progressively rollout the new paint scheme to all aircraft, which features the red belly (earth) and blue tail (sky) features.

As well as a repaint in the new RFDS livery, VH-XYJ aircraft underwent extensive avionics upgrade and interior refurbishment.

The first step in the aircraft's journey was to Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, where it was stripped to bare metal, cleaned and repaired, primed, and pre-pared for a brand-new paint job.

After weeks of work, VH-XYJ was ready to soar to its next destination at Toowoomba in southern Queensland, for an avionic upgrade.

To meet Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) regulations, several extensive upgrades were completed including the installation of a second GPS (Global Positioning System), second FMS (Flight Management System) and upgraded current system to TCAS II (Traffic Collision Avoidance System).

The upgrade also included a new satellite tracking and communication system and CB radio.

Following a successful test flight, XYJ departed for the coastal city of Wollongong for interior refurbishment.

Amongst general repair and refresh of the surfaces, a new cargo net was fitted at the back of the aircraft to ensure appropriate storage space.

RFDSSE General Manager Operations and Service Delivery, Claudio Grasso, said the refurbishments took around four months to complete.

The aircraft will predominately be positioned at Broken Hill for service but will be regularly used across the entire South Eastern Section network.

"From time to time we may need to have it repositioned at Dubbo to support any service requirements that may arise in the network," he said.

Mr Grasso said it was a team effort to ensure the aircraft was ready for take-off, adding he was extremely proud of his colleagues.

"There was some really good work done by our Aviation teams to get it to where it is today. From a regulatory perspective, there was also lot of work to ensure the aircraft met all requirements which needs a co-ordinated team effort," he explained.

Are you, or do you know someone who was helped by the Flying Doctor in the last five years?

We are always looking for new stories to share with our wider community and would love to hear from you. To get in touch with please email us using this address: galah@rfdsse.org.au