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Old 13th Feb 2006, 16:36
  #737 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: EGDC
Posts: 7,890
Nightwatchman - so when an S61 goes U/S and another is flown in to replace it because the CG don't have a 2nd standby, will that aircraft be of full SAR spec with FLIR et al? I have very reliable sources that tell me otherwise. All the RAF mk 3 and 3As have FLIR fitted and the turret can be changed from aircraft to aircraft very swiftly. Much the same as our radar is far superior to the 'cloud and clunk' one fitted to the S61 (despite not being able to see ahead I grant you) our FLIR/MSS is the latest spec QWIP device with autoscan facility - what is actually on the 61? It has taken 20 years to get it but it has been worth the wait - finally those with their fingers on the purse strings have started to realise what a valuable asset RAF SAR is.
Those not so well informed, assume that SAR is SAR and whoever does it, does it the same way and to the same standard - you show me the CG training hours dedicated to maintaining and improving capability and I will show you the RAFs. Who was it who nearly killed a winchman and survivor recently when the pilot lost references over a straightforward night deck? Ask angelonawire, he will tell you.
I think I speak for crabette as well when I say that I hope that the CHC provision of SAR will be far better than Bristows, and if so could well be due to the amount of involvement the RAF had in the process. Hopefully CHC management will have a much more long-term view and not spend their time trying to squeeze the last pound of profit from the contract by wheedling around clauses and sub-clauses with their lawyers.
I have had experience of Bristows contract management and quality of service was the last consideration, way behind meeting the 'terms' of the contract and paying their hard working staff the least amount possible.
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline