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Tuesday, 21 March 1961

Mr TOWNLEY (DENISON, TASMANIA) (Minister for Defence) - That is a difficult question to answer. What is required for Hercules aircraft is not a special parachute but special release gear. As the honorable member knows, having had some Army experience, there is a static line which goes around the aircraft. The man's parachute gear is fastened to that line so that when he leaps from the aircraft - or is pushed out by the sergeant - his parachute is released. Up to now, all the jumping has been done from Dakotas, and a modification is needed to the equipment in the Hercules aircraft itself. That is currently being discussed by the Royal Australian Air Force and the Army authorities concerned. I am sorry that I cannot give precise information about the number of jumps that have been made. I will inquire, and let the honorable member have what information I can obtain.

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