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-   -   OFFICER and AIRCREW 'CANDIDATES' PLEASE READ THIS THREAD FIRST! (https://www.pprune.org/military-aviation/405176-officer-aircrew-candidates-please-read-thread-first.html)

Pontius Navigator 8th Oct 2014 21:06

Speaking of Navs, and I am talking of those that already jumped the AFCO, OASC, and IOT hurdles, 30% or more still wash out.

Many who washed out we're chopped pilots but that was when pilot intakes were much higher. Now I would expect competition would be stiffer so standards higher.

However there is one interesting change. This thread on Pprune used to be very active with potential applicants; now interest is close to nil.

Party Animal 9th Oct 2014 08:30

PN - For the benefit of youths reading this thread, we stopped recruiting Navs over 10 years ago! Non pilot aircrew were then accepted as either Weapon System Officers (WSO) or Weapon System Operators (WSOp). As a follow on from SDSR 10, WSO training has ceased to exist and WSOp training, after a long period of being relatively quiet is about to ramp up again. Albeit, with nothing like the intake once seen during the days of having an MPA Force.

Melchett01 9th Oct 2014 10:13


However there is one interesting change. This thread on Pprune used to be very active with potential applicants; now interest is close to nil.
I bet if there was a thread dealing with PVRs, redundancy and pensions it would be far busier than this one is now. What would you call it though? 'How green is your grass?' Or maybe 'Come on in, the water's lovely' ;)

Pontius Navigator 9th Oct 2014 13:58

PA, thank you for the amplification, my point though was that there are a lot of hurdles with wings following training, OCU, Sqn check and acceptance up to 6 months after OCU.

Typhoon93 21st Oct 2014 15:36

Hi all, I am after a bit of advice from anybody who has direct experience with OASC.

I got in contact with RAF Recruiting about eyesight requirements for Aircrew and the possibility of laser corrective surgery. I got back this:

"Any candidates having [email protected] eye surgery must wait at least 12 months before applying,
you must be at least 22 years of age at your application,
the total pre operative refractive error was not outside the limits for selection i.e. +6 or -6 dioptre in either eye and the best spectacle corrected visual acuity was within selection standards.
Further specialist assessment will also be required following the pre employment medical assessment to confirm ophthalmic fitness for recruit entry."

They didn't answer my question as to whether I would be allowed in to the Service BEFORE having laser corrective surgery. I was told by one of the FJ pilots that laser surgery BEFORE applying may stop me getting in.

What are my options?

Pontius Navigator 21st Oct 2014 15:48

Do you really need to have the options spelt out?

I think you set them out quite well. Just consider your value to the RAF. Right now it is near to zero. As you jump through each hoop your value increases. You should be able to see where that leads.

Typhoon93 21st Oct 2014 20:18

So the reality is then that the only chance I'd have of even getting past OASC is to have surgery.

Thanks PN.

Pontius Navigator 21st Oct 2014 20:48

That was not a conclusion o would draw from what you wrote.


otal pre operative refractive error was not outside the limits for selection i.e. +6 or -6 dioptre in either eye and the best spectacle corrected visual acuity was within selection standards

Typhoon93 21st Oct 2014 21:05

Unfortunately I have astigmatism, which requires me to have glasses. I highly doubt I will pass a Service/pilot eye test prior to basic flying training (if it works like that?) without corrective surgery. Even for simple tasks like reading a letter, or even reading PPRuNe, I struggle without glasses. My aided vision is pretty good I think, but then I've had nothing to compare it to.

I was just wondering if the RAF will allow me to have the surgery after Selection. I'd be willing to have it, and at my own expense.

Pontius Navigator 22nd Oct 2014 06:32


Originally Posted by Typhoon93 (Post 8707808)
Unfortunately I have astigmatism, which requires me to have glasses. I highly doubt I will pass a Service/pilot eye test prior to basic flying training (if it works like that?) without corrective surgery. Even for simple tasks like reading a letter, or even reading PPRuNe, I struggle without glasses. My aided vision is pretty good I think, but then I've had nothing to compare it to.

I was just wondering if the RAF will allow me to have the surgery after Selection. I'd be willing to have it, and at my own expense.

Ah, you never said that in the first place. To answer the final question, almost certainly not. Imagine a box of 24 Apples, all the same price but the biggest, shiniest one has a worm hole. It'll probably be ok if you cut it out. . .

Your best bet is to apply and let the medics assess you and tell you what you really need to know.

Geff89 1st Nov 2014 00:24

Eye Surgery
 
Hey Typhoon,


My History:


Gap Year program in 2010---I had PRK in 2011.


I have just recently been accepted to flight screening.


My Tips: they only accept PRK surgery at the moment... if you have lasik your out. I believe you need to have the surgery before being accepted...I had the same thought as you but was told no. (it was the best money I spent anyway regardless). The rules keep changing so yeh..its a long process...


Goodluck

MaxAnderson 9th Nov 2014 21:51

Just to clear things up:

Whats this 0.5% figure for pilot applicants? Meaning that (less than) 1 in 200 applicants are selected?

Not to sound like a complete plonker but I am not terribly confident that this is particularly accurate, based on all previous information that I've heard. I'm basing this all on info that I've got from the Royal Navy - not the RAF so I can't comment on those guys.

Upon meeting individuals successful at FATs, I've been informed by multiple people that flying aptitude is a score out of 180, where 112 is a pass for pilot. However, I met a chap who got 140 and that was considered a very competitive score.

I have also heard that candidates that scraped the 112 mark got into BRNC as potential aircrew (granted that this is based on AIB score) but have an equal chance to get flying.

I have also heard that if you fail for pilot (or any aircrew role that you were applying for) you can write to the AIB and ask to re-take the FATs at least once more.

All of this stuff is from some RN Personnel, a couple of ACLOs and candidates from around the country. Can anyone tell me if it is valid?

I'll be fair, the 0.5% figure sounds plausible because of the demand for quality over quantity, and I have met a vast number of plonker candidates (I for which may be one, but I can only hope that I'm not).

Just thought I'd share my side of the story, I figured I might learn something.

Liveforthesky 9th Nov 2014 22:09

Hi again everyone,

As an ex army reserve engineer, I am waiting for my discharge QR code to be transferred from the Army to the RAF so that they have an understanding of how I was discharged. (Which was voluntary discharge). I have been waiting for over a month and have chased up my my recruitment office, they haven't given me much information, and simply suggest that it is being processed up in Scotland. Has anyone else had this issue? Would anyone else be able to shed light on how long it could take? :ugh:

Thanks,
Ste.

Typhoon93 10th Nov 2014 02:17

Geff, only just seen this.

Thank you so much. PRK would be the option I'd go for regardless since it is the most practised, and subsequently there is a lot more experience. I am not saying LASIK is bad, or those who perform it are bad, it's just that I am more comfortable that way.

My biggest hurdle at present is asthma. I understand the risks with asthma and flying, however those risks only apply to those who currently suffer with asthma (the unpredictable asthma attacks). I haven't been prescribed medication for a long time, and I hardly used the medication when I had it as I didn't need it. Unless the RAF suddenly changes its policies on childhood asthma or it gets wiped from my medical records as a mistake (in which case I wouldn't volunteer the information to OASC!), then the only way I will ever get near a fast jet is by going to a museum.

Another question for PN: Why is childhood asthma (however the asthma symptoms are no longer present and have not been for some time, if at all) so frowned upon for Aircrew duties?

Mil-26Man 10th Nov 2014 15:47

Asthma and short-sightedness? I wish you well Typhoon, but I'd suggest you have a back-up plan in case RAF aircrew doesn't work out for you.

Don't mean to put a downer on your ambitions, but at 21 you're old enough not to have it sugar coated. The harsh fact is that either of those conditions on their own will likely preclude you from fast jet aircrew (and by extension, any other from of RAF/RN/AAC aircrew), and both together..., well.

I know this from experience.

gr4techie 10th Nov 2014 17:47


Originally Posted by T93
PRK would be the option I'd go for regardless since it is the most practised, and subsequently there is a lot more experience. I am not saying LASIK is bad, or those who perform it are bad, it's just that I am more comfortable that way.

When I had my eyes done, Lasik with wavefront was the best treatment available. The qualified Doctor who did my eyes has been doing laser eye surgery since 1991 and has done 13,000 patients.

Maybe PRK has been done more if it is an older technology and cheaper. It doesn't mean it is better.

But don't take my word for it, you really should speak to the qualified experts who are in the know.


Why is childhood asthma (however the asthma symptoms are no longer present and have not been for some time, if at all) so frowned upon for Aircrew duties?
Because OASC can pick and choose who they want. If they always have more applicants than vacancies they can afford to turn down anyone. If they have 2 candidates for 1 position, one has asthma and the other doesn't, they will take the less risk candidate.

Typhoon93 11th Nov 2014 13:38

GR4Techie,

Being picky and discriminating against a former condition that is of no problem (if it even existed in the first place) any more are quite different.

If a person fails the flying aptitude tests, or they have a very serious, current medical problem, then I understand. However it is possible to "grow out" of asthma, where the symptoms are no longer present.

I am willing to bet that nobody has ever had the balls to officially challenge the Services on their policy regarding 'childhood asthma'. I have read on here, that apparently Forces medics, and other personnel from not only the UK, but the world over can't understand it either. But those higher up the Chain of Command won't budge....

Mil-26Man 11th Nov 2014 15:05

You don't have to understand why the RAF won't accept asthma in its aircrew candidates, you just have to accept it and find something else to do with your life.


I am willing to bet that nobody has ever had the balls to officially challenge the Services on their policy regarding 'childhood asthma'.
It's not a question of 'balls' Typhoon, it's having the sense to realise the inevitable and to move on with your life.


But those higher up the Chain of Command won't budge....
You said it, so accept it and move on with your life.

Pontius Navigator 11th Nov 2014 15:22

It has been said many times, the requirement for aircrew is low, dozens instead of the hundreds of Hester year. The numbers applying May be lower too but the majority will be fully fit with no medical history.

A candidate with any medical history, resolved or not, is an unnecessary risk when compared with others. Frustrating maybe but that is life.h

Typhoon93 11th Nov 2014 16:35

True, PN.... and it won't stop me from trying to get it taken off my records.

I didn't have bloody asthma, I barely took my inhalers. The GP's were wrong IMHO. Although I'm a 90's child..... anybody with the sniffles in Spring time had Asthma back then.


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