Cargo aircraft flies to disaster zone with 55 tonnes of relief supplies / Christoph Franz calls for donations from staff
Lufthansa Cargo is to launch an aid flight to the Philippines on 22 November at 12.40 p.m. The Lufthansa Group’s cargo airline will operate this special flight free of charge. Together with the ‘Aktion Deutschland Hilft’ emergency aid alliance and in partnership with other Group companies, Lufthansa Cargo is providing fast, pragmatic assistance for those severely affected by the typhoon.
The Lufthansa Group has a long tradition of operating prompt and professional aid flights to crisis regions in the event of humanitarian catastrophes. Carrying around 55 tonnes of relief supplies, the MD-11 freighter from Lufthansa Cargo will bring more than twice the amount of cargo that was transported to the crisis-hit region by Lufthansa’s first special flight last week. The aid materials, including urgently needed food packages, medical supplies, water treatment plants and tents, was provided by various organisations within the ‘Aktion Deutschland Hilft’ emergency aid alliance – including World Vision, Malteser, Help and Action Medeor. The complex logistics in Manila will be handled by logistics group and close partner of Lufthansa Cargo, DHL, who, together with the aid organisations, will handle the prompt onward transport. Alongside Manila, DHL has had so-called catastrophe relief teams on the ground in the Cebu region for several days now. There, they are working pro bono to handle the incoming relief supplies.
“Almost a week after the devastating typhoon, the need in the Philippines is still unimaginable,” said Karl Ulrich Garnadt, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Lufthansa Cargo. “Together with our partner, ‘Aktion Deutschland Hilft’, and the organisations involved, we want to provide the people on the ground with professional, pragmatic assistance. Prompt shipments by aircraft are essential for this.”
The Lufthansa Cargo aid flight is already the second to be operated by a Lufthansa Group company within a very short space of time. Just a few days ago on 10 November, Lufthansa flew 25 tonnes of urgently needed relief supplies to Manila with an Airbus A340 600 passenger jet. On the initiative of a Lufthansa pilot who would have flown the empty aircraft to the Philippines for maintenance, the opportunity was quickly used for a life-saving mission. In an unparalleled measure, employees from Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo and Lufthansa Technik made a voluntary commitment at the weekend to organise an aid package together with World Vision and I.S.A.R. Germany.
Christoph Franz, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Deutsche Lufthansa AG, said: “I would like to thank everyone who, with their great personal dedication, made this flight possible and ensured that the aid supplies arrived quickly at their destination.” At the same time, he called for donations to the HelpAlliance, the not-for-profit organisation run by Lufthansa employees and supported by the Group: “We have made a start, but hundreds of thousands of people still need help.” Donations will go to local organisations to help with reconstruction. The Lufthansa Group will match the amount donated by its employees.