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C130k Fleet

Volume 407: debated on Friday 20 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the estimated run on costs are for the (a) C130K and (b) C17 aircraft; and what additional structural work will be needed on the C130K fleet to keep the aircraft operational until their out of service date. [117498]

The cost of maintaining the C130K fleet is estimated at around £30 million per year (covering maintenance and support, but not the cost of aircrew, fuel, etc.). Based on current plans, it is expected that these aircraft will be withdrawn from service around the end of this decade. To ensure that the fleet remains operational up to this point, it is expected that modifications will be required on most of the fleet to maintain structural integrity of the aircraft. A more substantial work package, including outer wing replacement, may be required for several C130K aircraft that have undertaken more demanding flying tasks during recent operations.We currently operate four C-17 aircraft obtained under lease until 2008. If we exercise the option to extend the lease on all four to 2010, the additional costs are estimated at around £130 million in total. This sum includes the cost of the lease extension and in-service costs for the two-year period 2008–10.