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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 07:39
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: EGDC
Posts: 7,262
There is a looming demographic gap for UK SAR paramedics since the posts have traditionally been filled by ex-mil winchpersons but there is no training pipeline for those any more.

The advantages that the mil guys and girls had was that they often had other mil aviation backgrounds - support helicopters, Nimrods etc and went through a rigorous selection and training process (which many failed) so that only the best got through. That quality was evident when the paramedic training was introduced early 2000s and all but a few lapped it up and went onto attain their paramedic status.

There has long been an argument that training an existing paramedic to become a winchperson must be cheaper - the problem is the length of training required to be safe and effective on the wire and as part of a crew - those hundreds or thousands of hours of previous aviation and military exposure to risk can't be reproduced or replicated in a few short hours of wet and deck winching.

I had thought that part of the UKSAR contract was to set up a proper training school to ensure continuity for SAR rearcrew and perhaps the latest adverts are a sign that this might be happening - it's success will very much depend on the quality of the individuals they recruit and the rigour of the training.

Don't know if there is a big enough budget to achieve what is required within the current contract.......and they would probably have to up the salary by 20K to tempt those still left in the mil to jump ship.........
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline