|Italian Typhoons intercept Portuguese aircraft.|
Two Italian Air Force QRA F-2000 Typhoons assigned to the 36th Wing of Gioia del Colle (Bari) intercepted a Portuguese Cessna aircraft on June 29. The civilian plane, en route from Geneva to Brindisi, interrupted radio communications while flying over Tuscany.
The two fighters took off at approx 10 am LT to identify the "Renegade" and after a few minutes they established visual contact with the aircraft to make sure it was not in an emergency or danger. Once the identification was completed, the two fighters escorted the Portuguese aircraft until it restored contact with the air traffic control authorities.
The scramble order was received by the CAOC (Combined Air Operation Center) of Torrejon (Spain) that is the NATO unit responsible for the surveillance of the area, while the mission of the Typhoons has been controlled by the 22nd Radar Group of the Italian Air Force of Licola (Napoli).
The Italian Air Force provides surveillance of the national airspace 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, with an integrated defense system to that of NATO Allies. The ground surveillance service is managed by the 11th Integrated Missile Air Defense Unit of Poggio Renatico (Ferrara) and the 22nd Radar Group of Licola (Napoli), while flight operations are ensured by the 4th Wing of Grosseto, 36th Wing of Gioia del Colle and 37th Wing of Trapani Birgi, all units are equipped with Eurofighter aircraft.
Written by Matteo Sanzani
Source, Image: Italian AF