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Bristows to take over SAR from 2015

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Bristows to take over SAR from 2015

Old 27th Mar 2013, 13:05
  #81 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: England
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We look after one 1000 hour a year aircraft seven days a week with 8 guys. We get leave cover from larger bases. If we went to two aircraft I would expect two more. Shift patterns work out at 4 days on 4 days off.

When we were operating 7 aircraft 7 days a week all over a 1000 hours we had 24 guys.
That was previous generation aircraft which were also a little long in the teeth.
This included all maintenance and component changes except for major inspections (10 years/6000 hours).

I also think that those making snotty comments about Bristow being American should think about the well paid jobs that they provide for a huge number of ex military pilots and engineers. Most of us pay UK tax, live and spend our money in the UK. When you look around any civilian crewroom flying or maintenance most still have a military background and long may that continue.
If there are corporation tax issues that is for the government to sort out.

Last edited by ericferret; 27th Mar 2013 at 13:31.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 13:13
  #82 (permalink)  
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Hasn't it already been mentioned here that the Fleet Air Arm will still continue training their crews for Search and Rescue. If this is the Case then there will still be a flow of SAR trained crews for Bristows to employ.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 13:18
  #83 (permalink)  
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All this rubbish about charging people to rescue them must be a joke, surely. People cannot be that stupid to even infer that that might happen.

How many bills has the Coastguard sent out from 1969?
How many bills has the RNLI sent out since 1824?

There is also another amazing thing on this thread. Apparantly helicopters can perform way beyond the laws of physics when there is a steely eyed miltary pilot at the controls. According ot one south western MP military helicopters do not require the pilot "to have to one eye on the fuel guage" so they obviously cannot run out of fuel mid Atlantic either.

Military or civil they can only do so much and both are fully aware that the aircraft will be required to do the same job tomorrow so forget any imaginary insurance restrictions.

To infer that civilian aircrews will shirk a job because of company instructions is an insult to those who have flown this operation for years and shows an abysmal lack of knowledge of their procedures.

Last edited by Fareastdriver; 27th Mar 2013 at 13:24.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 13:24
  #84 (permalink)  
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Indeed, there may be a call out charge for every scramble.

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Old 27th Mar 2013, 13:47
  #85 (permalink)  
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Why do you think its rubbish?
I can see this government doing exactly that!

The tax on the insurance policies alone is worth it to them, not to mention the cost of a claim against an individuals insurance company.

Do you really think they haven't thought of that?
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 14:09
  #86 (permalink)  
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I must say I find some of the anger being spouted here very depressing. No one likes change, no one likes to see a fine military role come to an end, but the reality is that times are changing.

SAR has all but ceased to be a military task, it is to all intents and purposes a very much civilian orientated emergency service role. While the SAR force exists, pressures on our very stretched budget will continue for the simple reason that the SAR force occupies the same public mindset as the Reds - too high profile, cant be touched in a major way.

At the same time, there is barely controlled hysteria in some quarters about call out charges. Lets be clear here - every taxpayer in this country pays the callout charge at present through our taxes. Its not a magically free service, we all pay for it. If charges are raised for call outs (and I've yet to see anything implying this would actually happen), then the costs are lying where they fall. We expect people to pay for travel insurance overseas to cover medevac, so why should we expect to get SAR without paying for it? If this makes people a bit more aware of the major costs associated with running this capability, and more willing to not call in for helicopter rescue for very spurious reasons (oh my GPS doesnt work, I'm tired, I need to go to a meeting etc), then perhaps thats a good thing.

Finally, I find the attitude of some that only the Mil has a monopoly on dangerous flying disheartening. I've flown with the RAF and RN many times over the years, often in some very high risk situations. I quite literally owe my life to the efforts of an RAF crew after an operational theatre flight. But, I do not think that the military community has the monoply on being able to fly bravely or do SAR. A grave disservice is being done to the aviators and maintainers who are not mil, by the arrogance of some to refuse to accept that just because you arent military doesnt mean you can't do the job.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 14:15
  #87 (permalink)  
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Bristows to take over SAR from 2015

I have yet to see any mention of Cyprus and Falklands SAR coverage. How's that going to work then?!
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 14:29
  #88 (permalink)  
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I don't think that anyone on here is seriously suggesting that the SAR job cannot be done by a civilian outfit such as Bristow - certainly I am not.

However, your comment that 'SAR has all but ceased to be a military task' is clearly nonesense, and you know that. If you don't, then you have no concept of how many military aircrew and groundcrew are currently involved in it.

I think that my biggest concern is that we have had Military SAR for God knows how long, and it has worked wonderfully. Yes, the aircarft are getting long in the tooth, but it is testiment to the boys and girls who look after them that they do a fantastic job.

They are underfunded, undermanned and everything else that is bad about our current military funding, but they still get the job done.

In light of that, I make no secret of saying that I would rarther have seen the money being put into Military SAR, which we know has worked for years, rarther than into a modern civilian SAR. After all, why change a winning formula?

I am not questioning the bravery rubbish that has been spouted, nor am I questioning the capabilities even. I simply don't understand why we have now gone for a 100% civilian SAR force with no military (or very very little) involvement when it has worked so well, for so long. i feel it is a step too far.

And whilst your comments about us all paying for it are true, I am cynical enough to believe that HMG will be looking at ways of recovering the costs of SAR call outs, I have no doubt about that.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 14:33
  #89 (permalink)  
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Hawksridge, no baiting was intended....I'm very happy for you to enlighten me about the military activities of Service SAR.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 14:57
  #90 (permalink)  
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Winco - sorry, my comment on tasking was more that the end user seems to be on the overwhelming majority of occasions a civilian and not military person and not a comment on the size of the force and footprint supporting it.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 15:13
  #91 (permalink)  
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I would rarther have seen the money being put into Military SAR, which we know has worked for years, rarther than into a modern civilian SAR. After all, why change a winning formula?
What winning formula? The military have been doing SAR since the end of WW II but civilians have been doing it since 1969. The have had a major share in SAR around the UK since the 1980s, so what's so reactionary about them taking over the whole, civilian orientated, show.

For the military to continue with the task they would have to replace the whole fleet. Despite one subscriber to PPRuNe arguing otherwise there is no way you can get a Sea King, Carsonised or not, to do the job because it is 1960s technology.

They would have to buy American, probably the S92; even though the EU225has better range and speed, it lacks cabin headroom. It takes years and years to get a new aicraft into military service with uncountable committees meetings just to buy one them the shelf. They would have to start now to get aircaft to follow on to the Bristow contract.

One wonders, sometimes, whether some of the protesters have got themselves too deeply in a situation that is dependant on the status quo.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 15:20
  #92 (permalink)  
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Twas all quiet about SAR, Civvies, Non-Sea King Helicopters, and non-Yellow SAR Helicopters until a fair number of Rice Bowls got broken.

Nothing is permanent in Life folks.

The Bean Counters have found a cheaper way of doing this SAR business and the RAF was just no cost effective anymore.

I would imagine it will be more an exchange of uniforms than anything else in the long run.

As the RAF jobs go away...and Civvie Jobs open up....the transition seems plain.

The real change is along with the shift in uniforms shall also have to include a shift in attitudes and accepting there is a different but equally effective way of doing this non-combat SAR business.

The Rocking Chairs are certainly going to get moved around.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 15:22
  #93 (permalink)  
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The civilans started doing search and rescue in 1969?

I think the RNLI's history goes back alot further than that they were doing Search and Rescue before Orvile and Wilbur were a glint in their fathers eye!
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 15:41
  #94 (permalink)  
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BV, Cyprus is all but civilianised now. It would be interesting someone could comment on the helo/maintainer ratio for the 2 Griffons out in Cyprus.

I suspect most of the negative comment is from full time RAF SARF people rather than Culdrose/Gannet folks.

The Bristow operation, when it was based at Redhill, put the MoD process to shame in terms of turn around time. This was because they were operated on a revenue earning basis and any down time cost money.

Last edited by Bismark; 27th Mar 2013 at 15:42.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 15:59
  #95 (permalink)  
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Surprised - no!

As an ex SAR pilot (21 Years) I am just surprised that it took so long to come to this. Over that time the RAF shrank almost year on year and the SAR force became just another career step for many people and huge amounts of cash were wasted in building HQs and empires with consequent jobs for senior officers. When I joined SAR (from SH) in 1978 the RAF had nine SAR Flights, divided between two Squadrons, each Sqn commanded by a Squadron Leader and the whole shebang run from a green shed by a Wing Commander based at RAF Finningley. When I left in 1999 we were down to six flights, each one commanded by a Sqn Ldr; the Squadrons were commanded (fom their new HQs) by a Wing Commander (with a Sqn Ldr deputy) and the whole force had a Group Captain in command (with another Wg Cdr and Sqn Ldr or two to keep him company). Part of the reason for the up-grade was to keep RAF St Mawgan open so that there was a job for an Air Vice Marshall!
I nearly went to work for Bristow in 86 but instead stayed in the RAF and went to Sea Kings. Im just a tad surprised that its taken so long to fall apart. Good luck to the new boys and girls, they have a great machine to play with. I wish I was twenty years younger, my CV would already be there at Bristows!
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 16:30
  #96 (permalink)  
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With this announcement of the loss of another RAF Force and its timing, I am assuming this is MOD preparing for a new tranche of redundancies at SDSR 15.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 16:43
  #97 (permalink)  
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I'm amazed that Crab hasn't put in an appearance on this thread - must be too busy finishing his CV, I guess.
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 16:44
  #98 (permalink)  
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I echo your sentiments entirely - and wish I too were young enough to sample today's new toys.

BTW, if you are who I think you are, we were neighbours at Valley in 1979!!
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 16:59
  #99 (permalink)  
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Ah, LD we probably were!!! PM me?
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Old 27th Mar 2013, 17:21
  #100 (permalink)  
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I suspect most of the negative comment is from full time RAF SARF people rather than Culdrose/Gannet folks
And this matters (other than for some sort of petty inter-service point scoring) because?

Many of those objecting to this decision have mentioned loss of military SAR, not RAF SAR.

Last edited by The Helpful Stacker; 27th Mar 2013 at 21:02.
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