TAM Bolivia adds a fourth BAe 146


TAM BAe 146 FAB-103

TAM’s new BAe 146 FAB-103 receives a water cannon salute at El Alto (Erich Kierig via Agustin Fernandez)

Bolivia’s Transporte Aéreo Militar (TAM) has added former CityJet BAe 146-200 EI-DJJ (msn E2040) from lessor Tronos on a lease-purchase agreement as FAB-103. She departed Summerside on 5 May, stopping at Norfolk/Chambers on her way to Opa Locka. She then departed on 7 May, stopping in Panama City and Lima before arriving in La Paz that evening. After being painted in TAM’s colors, she was formally greeted at a ceremony at El Alto airport on 13 May, during which she flew a pass over the airport, escorted by two Lockheed T-33s, with President Evo Morales, the Vice-President, the Minister of Defence, the Foreign Minister, and the entire High Command on board. In their coverage of the event, the local press helpfully pointed out that she had been manufactured “in Canada”. TAM already operates three other series 200s, and has a series 100 which it uses as a spares source. The airline links 21 destinations within Bolivia; the addition of FAB-103 will allow it to increase services to Sucre, Tarija, and Trinidad. South America is the fourth continent on which E2040 has operated. She began her working life in the USA, having been built for PSA as N357PS in 1985, then returned to the United Kingdom for a spell with Debonair, before journeying on to Australia in 2000, where she flew for Southern Australia and National Jet Systems (NJS). She then returned to Europe and flew for CityJet from 2005 to 2008.

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