RAF Chinook 'stuck in the mud' in Oxfordshire after emergency landing

Image source, RAF Benson
Image caption,
The Chinook's wheels did not perform well in the "extremely soft ground"

An RAF Chinook has been stranded in an Oxfordshire field after making a precautionary landing because of mechanical issues.

The wheels of the helicopter, based at RAF Benson, sank into the mud when it landed near Wantage on Tuesday.

In a post on Facebook, RAF Benson said engineers had fixed the mechanical issue but the "extremely soft ground" made recovery "very difficult".

It is hoped the helicopter can be lifted free from the mud on Saturday.

RAF Benson wrote: "While it was hoped that it could simply be dug out and then flown home, the risk of damage to the aircraft from this course of action has been assessed as significant and alternative options are being explored, including potentially lifting it from the mud with a crane."

A spokesperson said specialist equipment arriving on Saturday would enable the team to use a crane to lift the aircraft onto a platform where it can be checked before it flies to its base.

The base also said it was "extremely thankful" to the landowners for their "understanding and support".

Image source, RAF Benson
Image caption,
The Chinook has been stuck in the field near Wantage for three days

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