London, Aug 31 (ANI): The British special forces in Afghanistan have destroyed their second Chinook helicopter, after it crash-landed with 19 people on board, to prevent it from being accessed by the Taliban.
The Chinook, with a crew of four, was ferrying soldiers from the 2nd Battalion when it landed heavily, east of Sangin in northern Helmand, suffering severe damage to the undercarriage, nose and front rotor, The Times reported.
“Despite all options being investigated, due to the location and the environment the decision was taken that it could not safely be recovered and so it was subsequently destroyed by military personnel using explosives,” the British Defence Ministry said.
The troops continued with their planned operation and the crew was picked up by one of the two other Chinooks on the mission.
On August 19, a British Chinook being used to drop Special Forces soldiers came under enemy attack, causing one of the engines to catch fire.
The pilot made an emergency landing and no one was hurt. Both Chinooks were reduced to scrap to prevent the Taleban gaining access to equipment on board.
The loss of two such valuable helicopters means that the British military now has only about 11 Chinooks to transport troops and supplies around Helmand.
Eight Chinook Mk3s that were bought for the Special Forces are being reverted to ordinary utility helicopters at a cost of more than 90 million pounds. However, the first of these will not be ready for operations in Afghanistan until next year, the paper reported. (ANI)