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SAR: Search & Rescue Ops [Archive Copy]

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SAR: Search & Rescue Ops [Archive Copy]

Old 14th Dec 2005, 20:35
  #501 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Neverland
Posts: 33
Apart from a recent rant, I tend to make quite boring responses - and this is likely to be no exception.
Take away the protectionism of previous comments and look at what CHC has done in civil SAR around the world.
Have there been ANY major problems?
Have they DONE THE JOB any worse than their military predecessors in the same environment?
Have they been successful in renewing miltary contracts?
Nick - were CHC (then Lloyd, or maybe BOND) the first users of auto-hover for civil SAR in the S-76 more than fifteen years ago?
Were they one of the first to use NVG in civil SAR missions?
Can anyone else smell the coffee?
zebedee is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 02:23
  #502 (permalink)  
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CHC are now very kindly subsidising the UK Coastguard

Night Watchmen

You seem very sure that this is the case, but I'm not convinced. Some quick sums on the back of a fag packet for you, accompanied by a health warning that these are purely my assumptions and I have NO inside knowledge at all:

Purchase price for aircraft 65 mln.
10% per year Return on Investment = 6.5 mln

DOCs assuming 500-600 hrs/yr/aircraft (this figure may be too high?) = 4 mln

Staff costs using your numbers = 7 mln

Adding them all up and multiplying by 5 years gives a total of 87.5 mln.

That leaves a reasonable margin for overheads, insurance, mobilisation, base costs, etc.

It certainly won't be the most profitable contract ever signed, but I doubt it won't generate any profit at all unlike some other contracts in the past e.g. old Bond's BP contract.

HC, thanks for this :

even though you did vote for Bush TWICE

It really made my day
Variable Load is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 07:44
  #503 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2000
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Let's hope this new contract forms the basis for the 2012 one - CHC are at least looking to the future, the prospect of providing total UK SAR cover with the government footing the bill must be very attractive.
Since the RAF SARF is in tatters with serviceability problems, imminent contractorisation of engineering (with no visible contractor so far), an unneccesary move to Valley for the HQs and OCU and patchy and incoherent funding and support from IPTs, the sooner something definite (other than 'it'll be OK, we'll keep the Sea King limping along until 2017') is decided the better.
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 08:19
  #504 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 29
CHC Places Order


Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation has signed a contract to provide four S-92™ helicopters to CHC Helicopter Corporation to perform commercial search-and-rescue (SAR) missions for the United Kingdom Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) beginning July 1, 2007. Sikorsky is part of United Technologies Corporation.

Under the five-year contract with the MCA, CHC will operate its S-92 fleet around-the-clock from coastal bases in Sumburgh, and Stornoway.

This marks the first time that the S-92, the world’s newest medium-lift helicopter, has been selected for a dedicated SAR mission. “The S-92’s modern technology, performance, and industry-leading safety standards make it superbly equipped for SAR,” said Jeffrey Pino, Sikorsky’s senior vice president for corporate strategy, marketing, and commercial programs.

Company founder Igor Sikorsky was inspired to build helicopters because he believed in their life-saving capabilities. Within the past year alone Sikorsky-built helicopters rescued thousands during the aftermaths of the Asian tsunami, Hurricane Katrina, and the earthquake in Pakistan. “Sikorsky helicopters have been saving lives for more than 60 years. We are proud that CHC has selected the S-92 to build upon this legacy,” Pino said.

CHC’s S-92s will be equipped with duals hoists, autopilot, coupled hover capability, and the new Rotor Ice Protection System (RIPS), which meets the Federal Aviation Administration’s latest and most stringent all-weather flight safety standards. RIPS allows the S-92 to launch into known icing conditions that might otherwise delay or cancel flight operations. The RIPS determines the temperature and moisture content of the surrounding environment and applies heat to the main and tail rotor blades to remove any ice buildup.

The S-92 is the first helicopter in the world certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency/ Joint Aviation Authorities (EASA/JAA) to the latest and most rigorous safety standards. The S-92 was also the first helicopter certified by the FAA to FAR Part 29 Transport Rotorcraft, Amendment 47, the latest U.S. safety regulations, which mirror the European standards.

The HH-92, a military variant of the S-92, is Sikorsky’s candidate in the United States Air Force’s Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR-X) replacement program. The HH-92 advanced weapons system offers the best combination of survivability, performance, interoperability, safety and cost for the vital CSAR-X mission.

The Canadian government has contracted for 28 MH-92 helicopters, designated the CH-148 Cyclone, to fulfill a variety of military maritime missions in support of support of North American and international security, including search-and-rescue, surveillance, passenger and cargo transfer, medical evacuations and tactical transport.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacturing and service. United Technologies Corporation, based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

CHC Helicopter Corporation is the world's largest provider of helicopter services to the global offshore oil and gas industry, with aircraft operating in more than 30 countries around the world. CHC currently provides search and rescue and emergency helicopter services in Ireland, Africa, Australia and Norway.

I bet the BHL SAR crews are looking forward to getting their hands on these......
splodge is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 10:10
  #505 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: uk
Posts: 119
The S92 is only half the problem. Lee on Solent and Portland will be equiped with the smaller AB139. With a reduced load capacity, no place for a second hoist, parasite drag from the hoist/FLIR, is this the correct aircraft?

Yesterday, the crews at Lee did an excellent job rescuing a fisherman from the capsized hull of his vessel, then lifting 5 divers and 800lb of kit. How would the undersized AB139 have coped with that little lot?
SARowl is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 10:48
  #506 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2002
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As simply a keen observer and hopefully a non user of the SAR service can I ask a question?

Will there be an overlap in the Bristows and CHC contracts to allow crews to work up the new equipment while there still being the backup from the S61's in case of unforseen problems?

As I understand it the S-92A has never been used in the SAR role yet and the CHC helicopters will be the first with the SAR equipment fit - so there will be lots of scope for bugs that need ironed out in the early days. ( this is by no means a critisism - all new complex systems have bugs). Will CHC have a chance to iron out the bugs outwith the critical SAR mission?

P.S. Have the RAF/RN evaluated the Merlin for the SAr mission to replace the Seakings?
GeneralMelchet is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 11:41
  #507 (permalink)  
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Variable Load

I don't disagree with your figures up to the 87.5 mln but that only leaves 12.5 mln .

You divide that figure by 5 thats 2.5 mln a year and divide it it by 4 bases thats 625,000 a year per base for overheads, insurance, mobilisation, base costs, etc.

I think you'd be lucky to get the insurance for 2.5mln a year for 7 aircraft operating SAR!
Night Watchman is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 14:18
  #508 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2000
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It does not take a degree in economics to realise CHC Scotia have bid for this contract as a “loss leader” to be well placed to get the whole cake in 2012.
The sums don’t add up to a profitable contract, especially knowing Bristow bid was around £ 60 million with their paid for S61’s for the same period.
The future will tell if it was a worthwhile gamble for CHC and I bet the gloves are off between those two for future contracts.
At least it’s a “good cause” and not a multi billion oil company profiting from this battle over contracts this time.
finalchecksplease is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 16:10
  #509 (permalink)  
feet dry
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Evening all,

Do not forget that the ABs will not be the only SAR helicopters on the south coast. The Belgians and the French are routinely used (as required) by HMCG, also the Seakings still at Wattisham and Culdrose. The S61 is/was a marvellous workhorse though.

feet dry sends.
Old 15th Dec 2005, 16:19
  #510 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Posts: 224
Where have all these numbers come from? £100 million, £60 million? I haven't seen the number quoted in any press release and I doubt either company is banding about what they tendered. And who's to say that CHC was cheaper than Bristow's? Maybe the DfT are happy to pay more for new technology? Maybe they are happy to pay more so that they get experience with another contractor? Maybe CHC have a really nice deal with suppliers for being lead customer for the SAR 92's/139's?
boomerangben is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 16:46
  #511 (permalink)  
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The £100 milion came from an MCA press release but I'm not sure where the £60 million came from.

Your point about getting experience of another operator in my humble opinion is very close to the mark particulary in the run up to harmonisation.
Night Watchman is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 16:47
  #512 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Not sure of the £60m quote for the BHL bid, but the £100m was stated in this news item from the BBC website (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/e...et/4524702.stm):

New £100m coastguard helicopters

The new helicopters will operate from July 2007
A deal worth more than £100m, will see the Coastguard replace its fleet of seven helicopters with faster aircraft.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency will lease seven aircraft from a Canadian operator to provide coverage for the south coast of England and in Scotland.

The new aircraft will replace the seven helicopters operating from Scotland's Stornoway and Sumburgh Lee-on Solent, Hants, and Portland in Dorset.

The current Search and Rescue (SAR) fleet of S61Ns was designed in 1961.

The MCA said it has signed a five-year interim contract with Canadian helicopter operator CHC Scotia to lease four Sikorsky S92 helicopters and three Agusta Bell AB139s to provide coverage from July 2007 to 2012.

At some point there has to be a departure from existing aircraft otherwise we will end up with machines flying around on search and rescue that will be 60 or 70 years old

John Astbury, chief coastguard

Two S92s will be based at Stornoway, another two at Sumburgh, while two AB139s will be based at Lee-on Solent and one at Portland.

John Astbury, chief coastguard and director of maritime operations, said the deal was worth more than £100m.

He added: "The new aircraft are faster and will have greater endurance and this demonstrates the UK Government's commitment to search and rescue in the UK.

"The S61N, as the name indicates, were born in 1961, so they are approaching more than 40 years old at the moment. Although they are efficient aircraft they are very old machines.

"At some point there has to be a departure from existing aircraft otherwise we will end up with machines flying around on search and rescue that will be 60 or 70 years old and I think that it's entirely unacceptable to members of the public."

Angus MacNeil, Scottish National Party MP for Na h-Eileanan An Iar (The Western Isles), raised concerns about the suitability of the Sikorsky.

He said: "It is a shame that there was no opportunity for parliament to scrutinise the effectiveness and the suitability of the new S92 helicopters as this has a direct effect on safety and wellbeing around our coasts."
JKnife is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 17:39
  #513 (permalink)  
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The economics of this deal do not seem very harsh, to me. I think we are all ingrained with typical military thinking, where everything costs lots and lots:

In order:

7 aircraft use for 5 years each. Typical dry lease arrangements would be less than 1M per year per aircraft to place them on station, buy them, and set up hangar/shop kits. That is $35M for the fleet

Typical need would be 5 pilots per aircraft and 5 mechanics? Plus maybe 3 more admin/shop/schedule per aircraft? Call that 13 people per aircraft, full time. 13 x 7 x 5 = 455 man years. At about $150,000 per manyear ($75 per hour, including all benefits) that is $68 million.

If one assumes 250 hours per year, fuel is at $4 per gallon, that is $900 per hour, plus $1000 per hour for maintenance (atan assumed power by the hour rate) you gat 1900 x 250 x 7 = $3.3 Million
Assume insurance at 4% per hull value per year = $19 million X .04 X 7 x 5 = 26.6 Million

I don't know if the hangar is provided, or is paid for, lets assume each aircraft costs $50 K per year to hangar = 50K x 7 x 5 = $1.75 Million

Totals 35 + 68 + 3.3 + 26.6 + 1.75 = $135 million

Add 20% profit = 1.2 x 135 = $161 million
Convert to British pounds = 161/1.76 = 92 million pounds.

Buy a hedge for the dollar vs pound at 2 Million, and laugh all the way to the bank, with 7 million pounds for incidentals and unplanned expenses.

PS I did not assume the AB-139 was cheaper, but it should be about 70% of the S-92 costs all the way around, making the above calculations conservative, by far.
NickLappos is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 17:51
  #514 (permalink)  
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8 pilots, 8 crewmen and 8 engineers required for a CHC SAR roster.
Rotorbike is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 17:57
  #515 (permalink)  
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Rotorbike, thanks, I will amend the estimate, what about the pay rates? Can you tell me what the typical annula salary is for the pilots, crewman and engineer?

I assumed everything else on the list, feel free to comment.
NickLappos is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 18:07
  #516 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2003
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Financial information

CHC taking on more debt to finance new aircraft, personnel
Dave_Jackson is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 18:19
  #517 (permalink)  
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Thanks guys - I stand corrected on the £100 million.
boomerangben is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 18:43
  #518 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
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To run a full UK SAR base you will require per crew/ shift one qualified experienced SAR captain, one qualified co-pilot (ie two arms, two legs and a head and grunts when asked a question) one qualified experienced SAR senior crewman/winch op, one medically qualified, physically fit, no fear winchman, at least one licensed engineer and you could get away with a non licensed fitter as the second engineer. You then need the support staff such as admin, cleaners, logistics and not forgetting a pool of 'floaters' in case any aircrew or engineers throw a wobbler.

A lot of rear crew recruitment will be required as the majority of the BHL guys are approaching retirement. Military sources are drying up as the RAF is now offering professional pay spine money to rear crew and bonuses for retention. Most Navy guys if willing to leave will not wish to relocate to the outer isles.

cost approx: captain £ 65k-75k PA , co-joe £40k-50k PA , Senior crewman £40-50k PA , Winchman , £32-38k PA , licened engineer £25-£40k PA , non-licensed engineer £20-30k PA

that is for one shift, with european working time directives and flight time limitations the crew and engineers are limited to hours on shift especially the crew a max of 2000 hrs PA therefore to run one base 8 pilots reqd 8 crewmen and 8 engineers

approx cost for each base £1,012,000 per annum on salaries alone that is $2,064,480 Canadian without logistics admin and 'floaters'

these figures do not include remote island allowances, such as cost of living difference, travel to the mainland, heating allowances, housing.....BHL currently provide all of this to the Northern SAR bases

happy budgeting !!
ALANBRISTOW is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 18:56
  #519 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Out on a dark Stormy night
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Money Talk

Whats all this money talk about just accept the fact that CHC Scotia have got the UK SAR contract and are going to be using S92's and AB139's..

Best of Luck to all the CHC guys envolved and well done to the team who won the contract..

And the Bristows lads who will be changing uniform soon!!!

Also the Bristows lads best of luck in the future and a job well done and safe Flying until 2007..
sarmanontheline is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2005, 22:37
  #520 (permalink)  
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ALANBRISTOW - I don't know what is more annoying, that you are in all CAPS or that you stole the name of a great guy.

How many aircraft per base, should I assume the 8x8x8 is for 1 aircraft? I will revise the estimate, but so far, you seem under my budget for salaries, frankly.
NickLappos is offline  

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