Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Circuit breaker Day 30 pix: Republic of Singapore Air Force RSAF aircraft passenger stair trucks

Stair Force One: A gleaming and highly polished aircraft passenger stair truck painted with the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) Lion head roundel cheerfully gave the city state's air force prominent product placement when United States President Donald Trump used the telescopic stairway to disembark from Air Force One in June 2018. Despite the RSAF markings, the truck itself is believed to have come from ground handling agent, SATS.  [7 May edit: Not from SATS apparently. Thanks RX]

The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has a new aircraft passenger stair truck for its Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aerial refuelling aircraft. The European-built TLD ABS-580 is made by the same company that supplied the MRTT tow tractor/push back tug.

The telescopic stairway on the ABS-580 can reach aircraft doors between 220cm and 580cm above the ground. The stairways are weatherproof as they are made of extruded-aluminum non-slip steps, aluminum sidewalls and anodized handrails.

The letters ABS are believed to be short for "Aircraft Boarding Stairs" while the number "580" indicates the max aircraft door level that can be reached in centimetres.

The ABS-580 complements a different model of stair truck, based on an Isuzu truck chassis, that served the now-retired KC-135R aerial refuelling tankers.

Perhaps the most high profile RSAF stair truck was the one that served Air Force One when United States President Donald Trump arrived at the RSAF's Paya Lebar Air Base in June 2018 for talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Despite the RSAF insignia and the Singapore air force's name spelt in full on the sidewall of the telescopic stairway, Senang Diri believes the truck is not an MID-plate vehicle and actually came from SATS. [Note: Happy to be corrected if we're wrong and would be grateful for the MID number plate of the said truck please.][7 May edit: Not from SATS. Thanks RX]

TLD ABS-580 self-propelled aircraft passenger stair truck in the shadow of an RSAF A330 MRTT.
Foul weather cover for the ABS-580's telescopic stairway is optional.

Another model of telescopic stairway based on an Isuzu truck chassis supported the KC-135R tankers. Note the low-viz Lion head roundel compared to the first picture.

Stair Force One, the truck mounted with the RSAF's custom painted telescopic stairs, had its truck cab in white and dark blue.

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