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UK SAR 2013 privatisation: the new thread

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UK SAR 2013 privatisation: the new thread

Old 15th Sep 2014, 15:58
  #981 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by snaggletooth View Post
Any thoughts on what happens if the referendum goes down the 'Yes' route? Why would the DfT continue to pay for SAR cover in a foreign nation? But, the contract is signed and sealed n'est ce que pas? Can Westminster change it at this stage? Interesting times...

Those who think international collaboration is not an established and everyday feature of SAR probably shouldn't apply whatever the result.
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Old 15th Sep 2014, 17:16
  #982 (permalink)  
snaggletooth
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That's true Jim, international cooperation is a staple of SAR. But we don't often fund another nation's SAR operations as far as I know. Or will it come out of the foreign aid budget?
 
Old 15th Sep 2014, 18:41
  #983 (permalink)  
 
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The SNP were relatively vocal in their criticism of transfer of all SAR to Bristow - SNP condemn search-and-rescue helicopter changes - The Scotsman

Raises the question if they'd try to cover it via the planned Scottish defence force with assets they'd claim from the existing RAF/RN... whatever they might be? There is not a single word about it in the white paper.

Or would they just accept that Bristow are shaping up fairly well for the contract and leave it that way as a 'path of least resistance' type affair?

Like I said, I suspect nobody knows the answer and it hasn't been given a great deal of thought by the powers that be.
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Old 15th Sep 2014, 22:47
  #984 (permalink)  
 
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Bristow are shaping up fairly well
Are they? Surely only time will tell. Bristow may be recruiting some capable individuals but teams are only as strong as their weakest links and capable individuals can only work with the tools they're given and within the parameters that are set for them. It remains to be seen whether the combination of these weak links, unproven tools and civil aviation parameters can be overcome to allow the capable and experienced new recruits to flourish in their new roles. If they're held back then the energy, ideas and enthusiasm they bring from the military will wither and die. And SAR as we know it will die with them.
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Old 16th Sep 2014, 08:10
  #985 (permalink)  
 
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Then watch the rush to move to Shetland
What's wrong with Harris & Lewis?
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Old 16th Sep 2014, 16:34
  #986 (permalink)  
 
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I would have thought the contract was issued on behalf of UK LTD. If one part of that group leaves I would imagine that their part of the contract would be annulled, or the said party would be obliged to pay the share that covers Scottish waters and land mass.

Force Majeure and all that jazz!
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Old 16th Sep 2014, 18:35
  #987 (permalink)  
 
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Not all crews are straight out of the RAF/RN.

Satsuma,

not all the SAR crew are coming straight from the military as you know. There are still a large number of crew who are 'ex' sar whether it be RAF/RN/CG who are waiting to go back into what they have known for many years.

I agree that the undertaking for Bristow is huge and we all must expect that due to the size of this operation there will be issues that will come and go. Can you tell me of a company that could do this without hiccup, and please do not say the RAF. There is no way the crabs could bring a new machine into service until it's out of date!
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Old 16th Sep 2014, 21:05
  #988 (permalink)  
 
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At least the military aren't looking to make a profit out of it to keep shareholders happy - shareholders who couldn't give two hoots about the quality of SAR service provided and are only interested in a return on their investment.
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Old 16th Sep 2014, 21:39
  #989 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by P3 Bellows View Post
Even if that were true, you will need that to try and cover some of your start up costs in Salmond's Utopia

Wanting to be a normal West European country is not utopian.

And it's not his anyway. Independence is the most effective way of getting rid of the SNP.


Originally Posted by FC80 View Post
The SNP were relatively vocal in their criticism of transfer of all SAR to Bristow - SNP condemn search-and-rescue helicopter changes - The Scotsman
As far as I know, the Scottish Government Ministers for public safety matters have been kept informed about changes in aeronautical support for SAR but frankly who would bother telling the SNP defence spokesman.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 00:07
  #990 (permalink)  
 
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Get over it

Satsuma,
SAR is becoming a business, get over it. No company will run SAR for nothing, would you?
Yes it,s a great shame that the RN/RAF are losing the service that they have spent decades perfecting. It has been a bloody good service thanks to them and I can understand people's disappointment in a private company taking over, but let's face it this is nothing out of the ordinary.
So rather than look for all the negatives and slate the company chosen to provide the service before they have started why not become one of the happy people and look to the future.
So many pruners mankin and moaning about hearsay makes me think they are all eastenders fans. Get a life.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 05:04
  #991 (permalink)  
 
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Getting away from the deep politics, here's a neat juxtaposition of a CivSAR picking up Belgian soldiers from a live fire exercise in Scotland

Three Belgian soldiers rescued by helicopter from remote hill

Three Belgian soldiers have been airlifted to safety from a military excercise on a remote hill on a Scottish island.

The Belgian Army soldiers needed medical assistance after gruelling military operations in a rugged, remote hill in the Western Isles on Sunday morning.

They were part of NATO manoeuvres involving around 100 Belgian troops as well as British servicemen.

One man could not walk due to a dislocated ankle and another two were suffering from exhaustion, said a Stornoway Coastguard spokesperson.

They needed medical assistance during an exercise, believed to have been taking place overnight, through high heather and wet bog on the wild moorland and hills at Uisinish, on the east side of South Uist.

Rough terrain meant army vehicles could not get to the area which is inaccessible by road. There is also a lack of walking tracks to the isolated location.

Coastguards despatched the Stornoway rescue helicopter to the scene after the alarm was raised at 9.30am on Sunday.

They were airlifted to Stornoway airport where the three casualties were transferred to ambulance and driven to the accident and emergency department at the Western Isles Hospital in Stornoway.

The military exercises got underway on Thursday and will run until Wednesday.

Troops are involved with live-firing weapons at the South Uist missile range while a number of independent land exercises are planned over North Uist and South Uist.

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Old 17th Sep 2014, 08:43
  #992 (permalink)  
 
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Jeepys

If you can guarantee me that every decision regarding kitting, training, manning, infrastructure and aircraft development is taken with the safety of the public in mind rather than having one eye on the the bottom line, then I'm with you.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 10:40
  #993 (permalink)  
 
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SATS,
Don't tell me that the RAF/RN never looked at the bottom line. I would hope that looking for the best kit, which may well not be the most costly, should rule the day.
As for the RAF 'perfecting' SAR, well now we are OK all we need is some clapped out old seakings and we are there. You should bear in mind that nothing is prefect, just as nothing is ever good enough. Everything in life evolves and hopefully for the better.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 12:29
  #994 (permalink)  
 
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When they do look at the bottom line it's to stay within an allocated budget, not to maximise directors' bonuses and to appease shareholders and private equity investors who wouldn't know a SAR helicopter if it landed in their back garden and care not a jot about the quality of service being provided.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 13:20
  #995 (permalink)  
 
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And when did the Mod stay within an allocated budget? If it did we might just have a defence force commensurate with being the 4th largest defence budget.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 19:51
  #996 (permalink)  
 
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And when did the Mod stay within an allocated budget?
131 projects. Within "allocated budget" on 130.

25k over "budget" on the other one, which just happened to be RAF SAR related. But it saved 13M in support costs while improving availability, reliability and maintainability. They even gave me a commendation.

Time, Cost and Performance is easy if you're trained properly.

The trouble is, it raises the bar of expectation, which senior staffs and politicians simply won't tolerate. Ironic. A commendation on the only project I went over budget on. And severe bollockings for the rest. Your answer is in there somewhere and it involves getting rid of a raft of VSOs!

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Old 17th Sep 2014, 20:43
  #997 (permalink)  
 
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Business

Satsuma,

it's called business.

May not be what you want to hear but that's the bottom line.
People are in business to make money, simples.
Will you work for nothing, no of course not.
Will you turn down a pay rise, no of course not.
Are Bristows a private company in business to earn money, yes of course.
How they go about that may not be to your liking just like paying you a whopping salary may not be to their liking.
The clock is not getting turned back. RAF/RN SAR is finished. Look to the future otherwise you will get left behind with all the old farts who cannot accept change.
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 20:53
  #998 (permalink)  
 
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Satsuma,

Did MilSAR ever get unlimited training? If not, the reason was cost and cost alone. No government can afford to let people take $35m assets out and rag the life out of them for a year and have to replace them because they flew 20 hours a day, every day.

Of course there has to be profit in it, it's a business. A good business keeps it's eye on the bottom line at all times.

Can you give examples of things you are worried BHL will not pay for in the future that Auntie Liz does? How many hours flying are included on the aircraft? How much for role equipment etc?

If you can give examples of specific things that BHL won't do, all the doubters, of which I am clearly one, will sit down and listen. Until then it's just a moan about something which hasn't even happened yet....
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 20:54
  #999 (permalink)  
 
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And to be clear, CHC is the PE backed operator, not BHL.

First Reserve (and soon CD&R) know exactly what a helicopter is. I met 2x FR PE people on a course in London last year. Both were American ex M&A Bankers, one CS and one BoAML (stop me if this gets technical) and they knew a lot about helicopters and the industry.

The business is about significantly more than just flying. If you can;t see that I seriously suggest you spend time with friends in the operating companies outside of the cockpit. You;ll be stunned.

When did it become offensive in this country to make money? There are not many industries in the world where people with no degree (me) can invest huge sums of money in their careers (licenses) and then earn 70k+ a year for working 4 days a week in an industry where people are desperate to make it as safe as is humanly possible. Touring pilots make way more and pay less tax for working 183 days a year. And CHC just agreed to pay it's pilots 45% more over the next 5 years which is great for all as the others will likely have to follow suit to keep their people from defecting.

Smell the coffee! Life is good!
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Old 17th Sep 2014, 21:35
  #1000 (permalink)  
 
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You've had since 1971 to discuss whether private contractors are the right way forward for UK SAR helicopter services.

Now it is a done deal, you guys, and others elsewhere, are still banging on about yesterday's issues.

Surely today's issues for those in the helicopter industry who want a good SAR service in the UK are using your specialist knowledge to assess the manner in which the contract is being implemented. Discussing that assessment in forums like this and passing that assessment to your elected representative seem to me to be useful and valid.


- Was 1.6bn a credible bid?

- Why were Bristow 4 months behind the curve on the AW189 order?

- Have Bristow done enough to harvest the skills of current military rear-crew?

- Do the performance requirements of CAP 999 (Aug 2014) provide civil aviation flyers with the regulatory tools to provide a service that is fully equivalent to current military helicopter SAR?

- If AW189 is not ready, which rumour is correct for the 'Plan B': S-92 or AW139?

- Is the MCA ready for management of a contract where 70% or more of jobs are Land SAR which is outside their skill set?

... ...
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