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-   -   UK SAR 2013 privatisation: the new thread (https://www.pprune.org/rotorheads/511282-uk-sar-2013-privatisation-new-thread.html)

satsuma 17th Sep 2014 23:00

Can I give examples? At the risk of repeating myself, kitting, manning, training, infrastructure and aircraft development.

Is it offensive to make money? Perhaps it is when it's people's misfortune that you're making it from. Double that level of offensiveness when you're replacing a publicly funded service that is a necessity for the population as a whole.

Identify the difference between luxuries and necessities and you find the demarcation line between offensive profit and inoffensive profit. Postage, keeping your home warm, train travel: all necessary public services, all privatised, all much pricier than they used to be and all now run with the primary responsibility towards shareholders who don't give a sh1t about the person who relies on those necessities. All they care about is the return on their investment and it is to shareholders such as these that any provider of a privatised SAR service must also answer. And what suffers? Kitting, manning, training etc.

nowherespecial 18th Sep 2014 07:42

OK, in turn then:

What kit do you not have which you should have and did have as an RAF SAR service?

How are you poorly manned?

Why is the 189 a poor ac?

What infrastructure do you not have which you had as RAF SAR?

Name some of the luxury vs necessities you are losing out on in this transition?

Some selective examples there of things which went up in price me thinks, they were run at a huge loss and the government/ taxpayer doesn't want to subsidise them anymore.

Do you have a private pension? If not now you will do soon. Profit is what funds pensions. If you don't like capitalism, I'm sure UT Air are recruiting in Moscow.

[email protected] 18th Sep 2014 08:10

Perhaps consider the extra risks that non-licensed mil pilots have been willing to accept in order to save lives (sitting committed in the hover when winching to a restricted site or hover-taxying up mountains in cloud for example) knowing that generally the worst they could expect if their actions were not seen as reasonable would be a slap on the wrist.

If the CAA take a dim view of a pilot's actions, it is his licence and therefore livelihood that is at risk - will there be a conflict of interests there?

Will the CAA baulk when they realise how much SAR work has no chance of meeting PC1 or even PC2 standards, especially at night?

Who will carry the can if a non-licensed winchop, using AHT on a vessel or similar structure because the pilot's references are poor, manages to get close enough for a tip-strike?

Claiming that new and whizzy helicopters will make SAR better and more efficient is just a facade - yes you can get there quicker and easier and a better icing clearance will help with that but the vinegar stroke of many SAROps is a manual hover with visual references and neither of the new helos has a pilot's window that opens so you don't have to view those references through rain streaked perspex - a little fold-down peephole just isn't good enough, especially in the dark.

UKSAR could have been made a not for profit organisation when removing it from the military, an option that doesn't ever seem to have been considered.

snakepit 18th Sep 2014 10:07


UKSAR could have been made a not for profit organisation when removing it from the military, an option that doesn't ever seem to have been considered.

That's exactly how it was being run, at huge expense to the British tax payer, by the MOD?! I don't see any way you could have removed it from the MOD, re-equipped the whole force, changed everyone's Ts&Cs, licensed the whole organisation so it could operate, save money, then ask the operator to do all that for a big thank-you after 10 years. :ugh:

All that would have happened is the same bidders would have submitted the same solutions but akin to the way Defence Estate services operate. I.E. The upfront risk would have been passed on to the D of T by way of massively inflated bids. No profit here guv'nor honest!

CAR42ZE 18th Sep 2014 10:31


Perhaps consider the extra risks that non-licensed mil pilots have been willing to accept in order to save lives (sitting committed in the hover when winching to a restricted site or hover-taxying up mountains in cloud for example) knowing that generally the worst they could expect if their actions were not seen as reasonable would be a slap on the wrist.
The worst was a slap on the wrists, huh? I tell you what - any day of the week give me a ride with any pilot who cares about losing his job versus a pilot who is suffering from a case of deluded grandeur that they are the worlds greatest gift to aviation. SAR is not a place for a stick jockey.




Claiming that new and whizzy helicopters will make SAR better and more efficient is just a facade - yes you can get there quicker and easier and a better icing clearance will help with that but the vinegar stroke of many AROps is a manual hover with visual references and neither of the new helos has a pilot's window that opens so you don't have to view those references through rain streaked perspex - a little fold-down peephole just isn't good enough, especially in the dark.
Are you saying you used to stick your bollard out of the cockpit window of the Sea King to maintain a visual reference? Seriously clutching at straws to say a properly trained pilot can't maintain a hover by looking through a bit of plastic.

[email protected] 18th Sep 2014 11:28


SAR is not a place for a stick jockey
actually, in many cases, it is - that is if the casualty wants to get rescued of course. No-one is saying you have to be reckless or irresponsible, just prepared to put your life (and those of your crew) at some risk (mitigated as much as possible) in order to save the lives of others in peril - that is what SAR is about.

Try sitting 40' from a vertical mountain slab in the dark and rain, in and out of cloud trying to establish a stable winching platform (oh did I mention the gusty wind?) and then tell me you would rather look through either a peephole or a curved perspex window with no wipers (no distortion there then) when a simple sliding cockpit door gives you uninterrupted views of your hover references (usually in the 2 - 3 o'clock). Try doing it to a night deck that is moving plus or minus 30' in any direction and you will find that clarity of vision becomes very important.

TorqueOfTheDevil 18th Sep 2014 14:56


Are you saying you used to stick your bollard out of the cockpit window of the Sea King to maintain a visual reference?
Well, that has been done...:oh:


How many hours flying are included on the aircraft?
Everything I have seen (and I admit I haven't followed every twist and turn) suggests that training hours will be in much shorter supply with Bristow than has been the case in RAF SAR. Is this a surprise? No. Will this limit the ability of crews to carry out varied training at a variety of locations, thereby reducing somewhat the crews' proficiency? Probably. Will this make a show-stopping difference? Probably not.

Much like the outcome of today's referendum, noone knows precisely how it will turn out yet. Time will tell, at which point some people can bang on about how prophetic they were and others can prepare to wipe Edwina Currie's salmonella-carrying foodstuff from the front of their heads.

Al-bert 18th Sep 2014 15:55

Stick Jockey?
 
and the Wessex had an even better stick jockey window than the Sea King - so big you could climb through it! Tell that to the kids of today.......:}

ps what exactly is a 'stick jockey'? Was I one? Why did I come in here - nurse! :8

Sumpor Stylee 18th Sep 2014 16:49


If the CAA take a dim view of a pilot's actions, it is his licence and therefore livelihood that is at risk - will there be a conflict of interests there?

Will the CAA baulk when they realise how much SAR work has no chance of meeting PC1 or even PC2 standards, especially at night?

Who will carry the can if a non-licensed winchop, using AHT on a vessel or similar structure because the pilot's references are poor, manages to get close enough for a tip-strike?
Crab,

you still haven't grasped that civ SAR have been taking calculated risks of the nature you refer to for years but the CAA accept the risk v reward judgement of crews and the whole thing has been very successful. It won't be the CAA the individual will be worried about if they make a bags of it, more the lawyers in the subsequent board of inquiry......

satsuma 18th Sep 2014 17:54


How are you poorly manned?
Pages 48 and 49 of this discussion make reference to a manning problem that is developing.


Why is the 189 a poor ac?
As far as SAR goes, it isn't even an aircraft yet!


Name some of the luxury vs necessities you are losing out on in this transition?
You've missed the point - hugely.


If you don't like capitalism, I'm sure UT Air are recruiting in Moscow.
I don't think they're communists anymore.


Seriously clutching at straws to say a properly trained pilot can't maintain a hover by looking through a bit of plastic.
A pilot who is taking just a one eighth share of 50 training hours per month per unit will hardly be able to conduct sufficient quality continuation training to meet such challenges.

dingo9 18th Sep 2014 19:22

UK SAR 2013 privatisation: the new thread
 
Preparing to be shot down, but ... 50hrs per month per base, 5 crews per base ? 10 hrs per crew per month. Spread over average of 8 shifts, 1hr25min per shift. Sound reasonable?

jeepys 18th Sep 2014 19:24

Training hours
 
Seriously clutching at straws to say a properly trained pilot can't maintain a hover by looking through a bit of plastic.

Satsuma,

I am not sure whether you are aware that civvies have been flying SAR for over 40 years. Yes I know the RAF/RN had an abundance of flying training hours but there is always a lot more circulation within the forces as people move on and new crews move in. Civvy SAR is not like that.
I am not sure of your ability and maybe you think based on your experiences that 50 hours is far from the mark required to keep a crew competent but I think the civvies do quite a good job with their training hours.

How do you know the 189 is no good for SAR if there is not even a SAR 189 built yet? Perhaps you had better let Agusta know your secret.
It may turn out to be a poor platform but we don't know yet. It's like me telling everyone you are a s*!t operator. I have never even met you, or have I!

Vie sans frontieres 18th Sep 2014 20:55

No way. There are too many aspects to SAR for 10 hours per month to be sufficient. Standard decks, downwind decks, left to rights, right to lefts, trapped decks, RIBs, hi-lines, multi-seat dinghies, wets, ejectees, sits, IEC sits, drums, extended cable drums, AHT, navigation, GH, radar let downs, mountains - all by day and by night.

How can ten hours per month be enough for that - especially when pilots have IF stats to complete as well? SAR can be a risky business and serious skill fade afflicts even the most experienced of operators.

dingo9 18th Sep 2014 21:29

UK SAR 2013 privatisation: the new thread
 
Care to put a number on that to fulfil those currencies ?

Vie sans frontieres 18th Sep 2014 21:37

To stay on top of things, SAR aircrew require at least 20 hours training per month, preferably 25.

[email protected] 18th Sep 2014 22:09

Especially when you factor in how little experience on type in role many of those crews will have - building hours ferrying in the N Sea is not in any way the same as operating the aircraft in the SAR role - with so few training hours it is going to be on-the-job training which is not actually training (where you make things tricky for yourself to build skills) it is just getting the job done and pretending these are quality training hours.

Yes, a trained pilot can hold a hover looking through a piece of perspex, but how accurately? Within 6 inches or so when you have a winchman trying to get to a casualty 200' below you - there is hovering and there is precision hovering - the latter takes the best references available, especially in shi*e conditions.

Perhaps the 189 will be as good in the maritime environment as the 139 - oh dear, how long did they last at Valley?

Flounder 19th Sep 2014 08:40


How can ten hours per month be enough for that - especially when pilots have IF stats to complete as well? SAR can be a risky business and serious skill fade afflicts even the most experienced of operators.
If 20-25 hours a month is the requirement to deliver competency on the quoted wide variety of SAR skills could one of the RAF/RN pilots please divulge their annual total of flying in SAR for the last 12 months.

I estimate based on 25 hours/month with taskings on top I would expect you must be flying about 450-500 hours a year? Is this correct?

10 hours/month is too simplistic a calculation not taking in to account leave, sim training and various other commitments that remove a crew member from his/her flying duties. The estimated work pattern for BHL crew is 7-8 shifts a month restricted by FTL and ultimately the WTD of 2000 hours. This equates to about 15 hours a month, with taskings on top you're looking at roughly 25 hours a month. If that's flown over an average of 7 shifts in the month you're in the air for over 3.5 hours per shift. That doesn't sound insignificant to me. In fact it almost exactly reflects my own flying for the last 12 months having taken my full compliment of leave and 2 sim trips.

Flying in a civilian SAR unit I have never taken note of how many hours there are remaining for training that month. I don't know any crew who has and even if they did I firmly believe they would go training anyway. I know they would have the backing of the company to train beyond currency to competency.

I cannot imagine a scenario where crews were informed by MFO there would be no more training as the hours had run out.

Flounder (Just an unskilled, incompetent try hard staring through the misted perspex trying to do my best)

Vie sans frontieres 19th Sep 2014 10:43

Standard decks, downwind decks, left to rights, right to lefts, trapped decks, RIBs, hi-lines, multi-seat dinghies, wets, ejectees, sits, IEC sits, drums, extended cable drums, AHT, navigation, GH, radar let downs, mountains


In fact it almost exactly reflects my own flying for the last 12 months
And in that 12 months, how many of the above training exercises were flown at night?


You could get away with 10hrs training per month if you also had comprehensive training in the simulator
What good is simulator training to the rearcrew who also need 20-25 hours per month?

nowherespecial 19th Sep 2014 10:54

So then Sat,

In response:

How are you poorly manned?
Pages 48 and 49 of this discussion make reference to a manning problem that is developing.

I've read these pages and I still don't see. How on earth is that safe? manning is very frequently the last thing that comes together. BHL don;t need to have the crews now, they need them for contract start. Plus it is easy to argue the mil was undermanned, the UK Mil SAR used to work 24 hour shifts for example. Doing away with that is (IMHO) a good thing. I personally feel that working a 24 hour shift, even when given a fluffy bed and pillow for down time was a bad idea.


Why is the 189 a poor ac?
As far as SAR goes, it isn't even an aircraft yet!
True but it does exist, it's payload etc are well known now as is the role equipment which is tried and tested on other ac. any reason or insight you have as to why you expect it not to work when DoT, BHL and AW think it will would be appreciated.


Name some of the luxury vs necessities you are losing out on in this transition?
You've missed the point - hugely.
No I haven't. Aircrew rations were a great example of a total luxury. Seeing as you cannot name a single one of them, I will say there are none or you are too embarrassed to confess what they are.



If you don't like capitalism, I'm sure UT Air are recruiting in Moscow.
I don't think they're communists anymore.
True, but they are closer perhaps to the utopian state controlled ideal than BHL.



Seriously clutching at straws to say a properly trained pilot can't maintain a hover by looking through a bit of plastic.
A pilot who is taking just a one eighth share of 50 training hours per month per unit will hardly be able to conduct sufficient quality continuation training to meet such challenges.
Also, I'm worried about the people who think that some of these techniques are not a combination of techniques: someone mentioned decks and downwind decks as separate skills, they are not. People are taught downwind work very early in flying. You are simply overlaying existing knowledge and techniques with others to produce an end result (downwind + decks). Is it easy - no. Does it require 25 hours per pilot per month - no. If it does, we need new pilots.

Vie sans frontieres 19th Sep 2014 11:11

nowherespecial


someone mentioned decks and downwind decks as separate skills, they are not. People are taught downwind work very early in flying. You are simply overlaying existing knowledge and techniques with others to produce an end result (downwind + decks). Is it easy - no.

the UK Mil SAR used to work 24 hour shifts for example. Doing away with that is (IMHO) a good thing.
It's important when entering a discussion to have a clue what you're talking about. It adds so much to your credibility. Mil SAR still work 24 hour shifts, as will Bristow. On downwind decks it's not the aircraft that's downwind. :rolleyes:


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