28.10.2011 By: Craig Hoyle – Flight Global
Royal Air Force Eurofighter Typhoons standing quick reaction alert (QRA) cover for the northern UK were launched to intercept a pair of Russian air force Tupolev Tu-95 "Bear" long-range bombers on 11 October.
Based at RAF Leuchars in Scotland, the Typhoons were drawn from the service's 6 Squadron, which assumed full-time QRA responsibility at the site earlier this year as the UK retired its last Panavia Tornado F3 fighters.
"The Typhoons maintained contact until the Russian aircraft cleared the UK's flight information region," the RAF said in a statement accompanying images of the action.
With flight operations at Leuchars set to end as part of the UK's defence rationalisation effort, the northern QRA base location will shift to Lossiemouth, near Inverness in Scotland, from 2013.
Typhoons based at RAF Coninsgby in Lincolnshire, eastern England, provide the remainder of the UK's air policing service.