THOUSANDS of people across Dorset tracked a military plane circling around east Dorset’s airspace on Wednesday. 

More than 3,000 people took to the Flight Radar app to track the Boeing C-17A Globemaster III circling Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and other parts of east Dorset and the New Forest – making it the second most tracked flight worldwide at 4.30pm. 

The Royal Air Force plane, which has been airborne since leaving Bournemouth Airport at 3.45pm on Wednesday, March 15, landed in Brize Norton in Oxfordshire at around 5pm, according to the Flight Radar app. 

The Globemaster III is a large military transport aircraft that was developed for the United States Air Force from the 1980s to the early 1990s by McDonnell Douglas. 

Bournemouth Echo: Globemaster C-17Globemaster C-17 (Image: Daily Echo)

The RAF website describes the C-17 Globemaster III as a “longrange, heavy-lift strategic transport aircraft that can operate close to a potential area of operations for combat, peacekeeping or humanitarian missions worldwide.” 

It can transport 100,000lb of freight more than 4,500nm while flying at altitudes above 35,000ft. 

The RAF describe the Globemaster C-17 as being capable of "rapid, strategic delivery of troops and all types of cargo to main operating bases anywhere in the world".

It added: "The Globemaster’s load-bearing rear ramp and digitally controlled loading systems, combined with the skills of its crews and ground handlers, enable large, complex items of equipment, including Chinook helicopters, military vehicles and other heavy items of specialist kit to be loaded."

The Ministry of Defence has been approached for more details.