The Royal Canadian Air Force’s Snowbirds aerobatic team have today (April 29th) announced Operation Inspiration in honor of frontline workers fighting COVID-19.
This flyover will be performed by their signature nine-ship formation of CT-144 Tutor aircraft and will work itself across Canada from east to west coast. This announcement comes shortly after both American demonstration teams kicked off a similar tour, classified as Operation America Strong, in New York City.
Designated as Operation Inspiration, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated, “As we watch the Snowbirds fly over our homes, let’s remember we are all in this together.”
We are heading across the country to salute all Canadians doing their part to fight the spread of Covid-19. Our routes (posted here!) will target hospitals and residential neighbourhoods. More: https://t.co/zp8vIoDVnm. #cfsnowbirds #rcaf #ThankYouHealthWorkers pic.twitter.com/z4K3UhcfY8
— CF Snowbirds (@CFSnowbirds) April 29, 2020
Although it is currently unknown the locations the team will be visiting, the team did mention that their routes will cover many of the hospitals and residential areas that have been severely impacted by the spread of the Coronavirus.
Lieutenant Colonel Mike French, the Commanding Officer of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds said;
“We’ve been asked to do what we do best…inspire Canadians. Through Operation Inspiration, we not only want to salute the front-line health-care workers, first responders, and essential workers, but also all Canadians doing their part to stop the spread of COVID-19. We want Canadians to know we’re in this with you.”
The team is expected to resume operations shortly and kick off their tour in the coming week or two.
While initially met with criticism similar to the American teams regarding the flyovers as improper use of government spending, the team has been very public about their budget.
Just like the American teams, the Snowbirds budget has already been allocated for them and will not increase based on this announcement.
It is currently unclear at this time regarding further details such as refueling locations, logistical support, or any other aspects of this cross country tour.