Ebola-infected missionary repatriated

Ebola-infected missionary repatriated

The Spanish Air Force has repatriated an Ebola-infected missionary from Freetown, Sierra Leone.

At around 03:00 hrs on 22 September, a Spanish Air Force transport plane landed at Torrejón Air Base in Spain, as part of a mission to repatriate an Ebola-infected missionary, Manuel García Viejo, from Freetown, Sierra Leone. The operation was ordered in the afternoon on 20 September by Operations Command (CMOPS) and was planned and executed by staff and resources of the Spanish Air Force, under the control of the Air Operations Center (AOC) of Air Combat Command.

To prepare for the mission, a C-130 Hercules from 31 Wing was flown from Zaragoza Air Base to Torrejón, where a patient isolation unit was loaded onboard. Also boarding the plane were two flight crews and two three-person UMAER (Medical Air Evacuation Unit) medical crews.

The AOC co-ordinated the operation with Operations Command and the Air Staff and obtained overflight authorisation from a number of countries. The ACO also made the necessary arrangements with the authorities in Freetown so that the patient could be transferred to the airport.

The mission concluded on 22 September, after the aircraft returned to Torrejón Air Base and was cleaned and disinfected. The Spanish Air Force noted the professionalism of the flight crews, medical and health personnel that made the repatriation a success.