• Air Partner provided a unique integrated solution across charter and security to the FCO, enabling 32 British and Irish nationals to return safely to the UK
  • Air Partner’s Safety & Security division Redline Assured Security held sole responsibility for the security screening of all passengers and arranged the transport of appropriate security equipment and operatives from the UK to Tokyo
  • Air Partner ensured all Public Health England (PHE) health and safety protocols were followed at all times, including required isolation areas on the aircraft, Protective Personal Equipment and segregation

Air Partner plc (“Air Partner”), the global aviation services group, has once again worked alongside the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to deliver a unique, fully-integrated and holistic solution for the evacuation and repatriation of UK and Irish nationals onboard the cruise ship quarantined off the coast of Yokohama in Japan. 

The project was complex, challenging and time sensitive, made more demanding by the requirement for the FCO to carry out the security screening of all passengers and their baggage in Tokyo before they could board the flight back to the UK.   

Throughout the planning phase and operational delivery, employees from across the Air Partner Group worked closely with the FCO, the operating airline, the Department for Transport (DFT) and the Spanish Civil Aviation Authority to obtain the numerous authorizations and approvals needed to complete the project on time. 

Air Partner’s Group Charter team chartered a Boeing 747-400 to carry out the flight from Tokyo Haneda to Boscombe Down in the UK, ensuring that the aircraft was optimally configured. The upper deck was designated for crew rest only to clearly segregate the evacuees and the flight crew, and there was also a separate section in the nose of the aircraft that could be used as an isolation zone for passengers. 

Redline Assured Security (“Redline”), Air Partner’s recently acquired Safety & Security division and one of the world’s leading aviation security companies, endorsed by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), and the UK Department for Transport (DFT), worked hand in hand with the FCO on all matters pertaining to security clearances and the security screening of passengers and their baggage in Tokyo. 

Redline mobilized its security experts from its rapid deployment team (RDT) within two hours of the project being given the go-ahead and arranged for them to be deployed to Tokyo on the positioning flight from Madrid on February 20, along with the necessary scanning equipment. The Group’s Freight team worked alongside Redline to charter a Metroliner freighter to transport the equipment directly from Redline’s National Security Training Centre at Doncaster Sheffield Airport to Madrid ahead of this. The operatives were appropriately attired in protective clothing at all times. 

The evacuation flight departed Tokyo Haneda at 07:57 on Friday, February 21 (local time) and arrived into Boscombe Down in Wiltshire at 11:41 on Saturday, February 22 (local time), carrying 32 passengers safely home. 

Mark Briffa, CEO at Air Partner, commented: “Unfortunately, the spread of Coronavirus has continued at pace and our thoughts remain with everyone affected. We were pleased that we could play a role in the FCO’s mission to swiftly and safely repatriate British and Irish nationals quarantined on the cruise ship in Japan. Our Group Charter and Safety & Security divisions were in a unique position to deliver a fully-integrated solution to make this happen. 

This was a multifaceted and time sensitive project and I am immensely proud of the work our colleagues undertook to ensure 32 UK and Irish nationals onboard the ship could return to the UK. By offering this holistic solution, which combines Charter and Safety & Security, with appropriate international accreditations and approvals in place, we are ideally placed to meet our customers’ diverse aviation requirements in fast-moving crisis situations. We continue to work with customers to provide our range of aviation services in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak and remain on standby to assist in any way we can.”


The Yokohama cruise ship evacuation follows a project earlier this month in which Air Partner flew medical supplies to Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, and evacuated over 300 British and EU nationals from the city.



About Air Partner:

Founded in 1961, Air Partner is a global aviation services group providing aircraft charter and aviation safety & security solutions to industry, commerce, governments and private individuals, across civil and defense organizations. The Group has two divisions: Air Partner Charter, comprising Group Charter (formerly Commercial Jets), Private Jets, Freight and Remarketing; and Air Partner Safety & Security (formerly Consulting & Training), which comprises Baines Simmons and Redline Assured Security.


Group Charter charters large airliners to move groups of any size. Private Jets offers the Company’s unique pre-paid JetCard scheme and on-demand charter for up to 19 people. Freight charters aircraft of every size to fly almost any cargo anywhere, at any time. Air Partner Remarketing provides comprehensive remarketing programs for all types of commercial and corporate aircraft to a wide range of international customers.


Baines Simmons offers Aviation Safety Management, Fatigue Risk Management, Air Traffic Services, Wildlife Hazard Management and Aircraft Registry Services. Redline Assured Security delivers government-standard security training and solutions.


Air Partner has 17 offices across three continents, with its headquarters located alongside Gatwick airport in the UK. The group employs around 450 aviation professionals globally and operates 24/7. Air Partner is listed on the London Stock Exchange (AIR) and is the only publicly listed air charter broker and aviation safety & security consultancy. It is ISO 9001:2015 compliant for commercial airline and private jet solutions worldwide.


More information is available on the company’s website (www.airpartner.com).


About Redline:

Established in 2006, Redline provides government-standard training, quality assurance, and compliance security based solutions for Aviation, Critical National Infrastructure (CNI), Rail, Event and Corporate establishments, as well as other high risk businesses. Redline conducts auditing and health monitoring in support of both public and private sector organizations as well as supporting various government agencies. Products and services span the entire security training, quality assurance and consultancy spectrum as well as recently launched technology-based software applications and tools such as their digital Security Management System (SeMS) platform.


Redline is a UK industry leader in all matters regarding security and quality assurance through covert and overt testing and has been providing training for over 10 years from its headquarters at the National Security Training Centre (NSTC) at Doncaster Sheffield Airport. With over 100 employees in offices in Doncaster, London and Paris, this ISO9001 company operates at the absolute highest levels of aviation security with a notable record of achievement at G2G (government-to-government) and B2G (business-to-government) undertakings.


Redline has a significant national and international client base, many of whom use Redline as their sole supplier for their security requirements. Redline is endorsed by ICAO as an Aviation Security Training Centre (ASTC).


More information is available on the company’s website (www.trustredline.co.uk)


Media Contact:

Lindsey Wiegmann / Kayla Louttit

Hemsworth Communications

(954)  716-7614 or [email protected]



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