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

jimf671 5th May 2019 19:26


Originally Posted by snakepit (Post 10463474)
...though he has never worked in either organisation. ... ....

Fascinating.

jimf671 5th May 2019 19:32


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10463598)
... ... ... I know how well our rearcrew were trained and they earned every pound of their non-market force pay. ... ... ...

I know from the ICAR Air Commission reviews of accidents that because of the legacy that Crab's former colleagues bring to the present arrangements, SAR TC, SAR partners, and distressed persons are safer on the wire here than anywhere in the world.

jimf671 6th May 2019 03:35


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10462569)
Well, your version seems different from others - i don't know what your Ts and Cs were and are - what are you earning there now?

Did CB change the salary offer after the second stage of interview? I didn't get there thankfully but the £95K for SAR Captains was what was touted - if they didn't deliver that, I am even happier not to have got a job with them.

It needs to be pointed out that the figure quoted here by Crab is entirely consistent with the salary range posted by another pprune regular on this thread four and half years ago.

[email protected] 6th May 2019 17:26

So yours wasn't fake news Jim and neither was mine - don't suppose we'll get a retraction of the 'utter rubbish' notices..........................

drugsdontwork 6th May 2019 17:59


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10464685)
So yours wasn't fake news Jim and neither was mine - don't suppose we'll get a retraction of the 'utter rubbish' notices..........................

Not from me. The half dozen pilots who joined when I did were nowhere near that figure. So no retraction from me. But in any case I would have to go some to match the rubbish that some people produce on here.

[email protected] 6th May 2019 18:55

You didn't say whether you were up at that level now nor answered the question about being a captain or co-pilot when you joined. Which flight did you leave from?

You clearly know me but I have no idea who you are. Most captains I know were offered the salaries I have referred to - if the offer was changed post 2nd interview then I didn't hear about it.

One problem is that people, quite understandably, don't want to put 'sensitive' information on here for fear of censure from the management.

Myra Leese 7th May 2019 08:30

Crab,

At second interview the salary offer for captain was £84,000 with co pilots offered £69,000, at the time in line with N sea salaries. Not a huge step up for a top level PAS pilot but a considerable jump for junior officers who mostly went to the LHS.

[email protected] 7th May 2019 12:40

Interesting - so they did drop the salaries between interviews............

drugsdontwork 7th May 2019 13:30


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10465335)
Interesting - so they did drop the salaries between interviews............

Nonsense. The only person who mentioned 95k is you, and that was as a “ISTR”. You’ve been bashing Bristow since 2013, at least keep to the facts.

[email protected] 7th May 2019 13:45

Now you get the 'utter rubbish' award DDW, all of us were told the salaries that I have quoted at the initial meet and greet with BRS and subsequently at the first interview - it's not the sort of thing I would make up FFS.

It's all anyone talked about in the crewrooms for months and they are the same figures that were part of SARF briefings as well.

Perhaps you don't have regular contact with current and ex-Bristow employees but I do and most of what I bashed them about has been borne out by the commercial realities of privatising UKSAR. Why is there a growing shortage of rearcrew if everything is so rosy?

drugsdontwork 7th May 2019 14:08


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10465380)
Now you get the 'utter rubbish' award DDW, all of us were told the salaries that I have quoted at the initial meet and greet with BRS and subsequently at the first interview - it's not the sort of thing I would make up FFS.

It's all anyone talked about in the crewrooms for months and they are the same figures that were part of SARF briefings as well.

Perhaps you don't have regular contact with current and ex-Bristow employees but I do and most of what I bashed them about has been borne out by the commercial realities of privatising UKSAR. Why is there a growing shortage of rearcrew if everything is so rosy?

Thanks for that award Crab - I’ll treasure it.

No one I know ever mentioned 95k and it was certainly not offered it in an interview.

I dont dispute the tech crew pay issue, merely I dispute you fanning [email protected] flames as to how much pilots get paid to stir things up. You’ve been stirring things up for years, I recall several civilian colleagues incensed with the things you wrote, and I can see why after reviewing it. You don’t need to aggravate people to make a point, indeed, if you refrain from aggravation, more people may listen.

No doubt tech crew recruitment is an issue now, how could it not be now the pool has dried up. But don’t pretend military SAR was rosy in this department. I can tell you this: three man crews are sometimes inevitable due to short notice sickness, but they were PLANNED by the mil towards the end. And no tech crew are going to be flogged to death like many were at the end of the military, shifts back to back or long drives to other bases at no notice, with a limited option to say ‘no’.

A large scale SAR operation is always going to have challenges but let’s not pretend all was ‘rosy’ in the good old days. Sticking to facts is a good starting point.

jimf671 7th May 2019 18:26

I think you make some good points DDW, particularly regarding the standards our dear friend the MoD was achieving during some later periods of the service. I am not averse to whipping off the rose tinted specs and stamping on them.

Regarding salary ranges, the figures that have stuck in my mind, been quoted by Crab, and been quoted by others on this forum, have tended to be the top end of what, inevitably, is a range. And while the PA Scale range is a large, all-encompassing aircrew range of £37000, the BHL salary ranges are going to be more specific narrower ranges.

What we also have to take on board is that the numbers Crab and colleagues were given at the first approach were during a period when O&G was still awash with money and helicopter crew change in all territories was raking it in. Fast forward to April Fool's Day 2015 and the oil price was halved before spending the next year nearly halving again. Pencils were getting sharpened at both ends and used to write on both sides of the paper. Sacrifices were being asked.

So take the pilot top numbers (maybe chief pilot top numbers) and put a range downwards of £20k? £25k? Think of the SAR TC numbers as having a range of £12k maybe? Then think sacrifices being asked all round. Maybe the numbers make more sense like that.

None of that changes what some Master Aircrew are making on PA Scales. Nor does it change how little a first tour freshly qualified milSAR co-pilot might have been making while being accelerated toward captaincy.

[email protected] 7th May 2019 18:27

DDW - you know as well as I that the rearcrew shortage in RAF SAR was a combination of under-resourcing the OCU by stealing the aircraft for front-line and the SH force flatly refusing to release people from Chinooks who had been ragged with multiple tours in the 'Stan.

Poor management, certainly, by a tranche of senior officers and I am acutely aware of the problems it caused as my Sqn Trg team were repeatedly dragged off their primary role (and leave and courses) to try and fill the gaps.

Don't ignore the fact that the shortages were a long time in the making - you can go back to the initial decision to privatise SAR in, ISTR 2004/5, which started the change in priority for UKSAR - Bristow have managed their own TC shortage in 3 years all by themselves.

You say you never heard £95K - I know I did as did a great many others - we will have to agree to disagree but I even remember Captains talking about what they were going to do with the extra money.

I don't have to care if some of your colleagues are upset, all my criticisms were founded on truth and based on the accounts of very trustworthy people - people didn't listen then because they didn't want to so why should I think anyone will listen now? If the future of UKSAR depends on what I post on pprune then we really are up sh*t creek.

The CG service is populated by top-drawer individuals and has some of the best equipment going - it should be a completely self-sustaining model of success with no doubts cast over the future of the next contract - but we are where we are - I still have the utmost respect for those doing the job, I am far too old for those 2 am callouts in sh*te weather and I am always glad to be tucked up in my bed when I hear the Newquay crew go out on a dark and stormy night.

[email protected] 8th May 2019 10:53

PS DDW - just as a PS, I conducted a straw poll of the crewroom and the consensus is that my assertion about the £95K is both accurate in terms of what was touted by BRS in the roadshows and 1st interviews and also entirely representative of a SAR Captain's salary now.

jimf671 11th May 2019 23:22

"This bankruptcy filing is limited in its scope and only includes six U.S. entities, including Bristow Group Inc., our parent company, and two Cayman Islands companies. The bankruptcy filing does not impact any of our other U.S. or non-U.S. companies."

So a repeat of the CHC Ireland experience for UK SAR.

(Deepest sympathies to any poor soul who has recently moved from CHC Ireland SAR to BHL UK SAR. That is going to feel like the world is out to get you.)

Self loading bear 12th May 2019 11:35


Originally Posted by jimf671 (Post 10469278)
"This bankruptcy filing is limited in its scope and only includes six U.S. entities, including Bristow Group Inc., our parent company, and two Cayman Islands companies. The bankruptcy filing does not impact any of our other U.S. or non-U.S. companies."

So a repeat of the CHC Ireland experience for UK SAR.

(Deepest sympathies to any poor soul who has recently moved from CHC Ireland SAR to BHL UK SAR. That is going to feel like the world is out to get you.)

Can you give a summary of the effects of Cp 11 on Irish SAR?
This might be a good indication of what is ahead for all “non-affected” Bristow entities?

SLB

Apate 12th May 2019 13:00


Originally Posted by Self loading bear (Post 10469510)


Can you give a summary of the effects of Cp 11 on Irish SAR?
This might be a good indication of what is ahead for all “non-affected” Bristow entities?

SLB

I suspect there wasn't anything substantial, other than perhaps more scrutiny on discretionary spend. Also some suppliers might start being wary about bills not being paid?

Let's see if someone from CHC Ireland can add any more.

Self loading bear 12th May 2019 15:04

Under Ch11 the supplier bills should be paid normally, although I also have heard from an offshore supplier would was cut quite an amount on his bills by an offshore driller under Ch11. But that could have been his own fault that he was let to believe that payment of suppliers was negotiable under Ch11.



jimf671 24th Jul 2019 21:17

The jury is in.

https://www.gov.uk/government/public...copter-service

- HLS infrastructure

- Aircrew continuity

- Ambulance co-ordination

Didn't we know about these back in about 2012????

EESDL 14th Aug 2019 13:01

Please excuse my ignorance but who checks the standards / capability of the SAR provision now?
I believe that there was the Standards Flight in the Mil days but does the ‘customer’ get to review/audit these days?
I do not mean from the value for money perspective but the quality of provision - although I accept the two are intertwined,

[email protected] 14th Aug 2019 13:51

EESDL - all internal Bristow Standards as I understand it - I believe most of the Standards guys were ex-mil and had done similar job in the mil so quality of provision should be less likely to be conflicted by commercial pressures.

The CAA still has Flt Ops inspectors who can fly with them but I don't know their remit.

P3 Bellows 14th Aug 2019 19:18

I see a former mountain rescue team leader has a new book to plug. Well, actually it's the old book with a new chapter that drips with bitterness if the article below from the Press and Journal is anything to go by. It also looks like he knows very little about helicopters even though he has probably been a passenger in one on a few occasions.

It's sad to see how many people he is prepared to rubbish to sell his book. I read the original and found it was mildly interesting but I guess you have to do what you have to do to top up the pension




Press and Journal 14 August

Mountain Rescue Hero Lashes Out

One of the world’s most acclaimed mountain rescue leaders has attacked the impact of the creation of a single police force in Scotland and the privatisation of helicopters on crucial search and rescue operations.

John Allen, MBE, the long-serving but now-retired leader of the Cairngorm Mountain Rescue, is concerned about the loss of local knowledge he believes has happened in the process.

Mr Allen, 77, made the comments in a new edition of his book “Cairngorm John”, which was originally published in 2009.
He said: “The loss of Northern Constabulary [when Police Scotland was created in 2013] and with it the loss of mountain rescue’s local connection was bound to be diminishied. "For example, in response to a 999 call, an ambulance arrived at the Cairngorm Ski Ground car park, looking for a climber with a suspected broken leg.

“After discussion with ski patrol staff, it became apparent the call had come from an injured climber in the relatively inaccessible Coire an Lochain and was therefore a task for the Cairngorm MRT. The rescue was only begun some two hours after the original call. Had the local police station been involved, this inconvenient delay would not have occurred.

Rapid and accurate communication is essential and something practical has been lost, along with the relationship on the ground. Local knowledge is irreplaceable.”

Mr Allen has been equally sceptical about the effect of the privatisation of the UK search and rescue service, which was handed over to Bristow Group from the RAF in a new 10-year contract, starting in 2015. He added: “At the time of the privatisation, the new service was promised to be ‘the same or better’. Four years down the line, no rescue team in the new Independent Mountain Rescue (iSMR) service would have said this was the case.”

Mr Allen cited one example of a helicopter training exercise on a “beautiful day” in the Cairngorms which was called off at 15 minutes notice, due to ‘triggered lightning being shown as threatening.”

He said: “Triggered lightning is not a new phenomenon, but only in recent years has it been recognised as a dangerous issue.

“When the new contract was granted, civilian mountain rescue teams were not informed of this possibility and the lack of communication only exacerbated an already deteriorating situation. It could be the contractor’s attention was focused mainly on the sea, but the contract was, of course, intended for both sea and mountain rescues.

“This ‘one size fits all’ attitude may work better for offshore incidents than those in a mountain environment. Sea and mountain rescues present very different challenges.

“But a different approach from the RAF was bound to be taken by a commercial contractor. Perhaps a single contract for these two functions needs closer examination.”

Mr Allen was particularly scathing about the lack of awareness of the difficulties faced by Scottish mountain rescue teams, which he argues has been displayed by some politicians in Westminster. He said: “As a result of a series of incidents, and others with sister teams, the iSMR wrote a letter to the police in July, 2018.

“It was not acknowledged, although a reply came from the Department of Transport in September, stating: ‘No action possible. "This was perhaps not surprising as the MP involved in the decision, Nus Ghani, has a constituency in the well-known mountain area of Wealdon in East Sussex and cannot be expected to show an informed approach.”

The new edition of “Cairngorm John” will be published by Inverness-based Sandstone Press on September 26.

jeepys 14th Aug 2019 20:59

Anyone who titles their own book after there name is obviously a first class knob and I think this chap is definitely one of these.

jimf671 15th Aug 2019 04:33

Somebody calls an ambulance and the police get blamed?

I think maybe that's to do with
a) the casualty not asking for the police and mountain rescue :ugh:
b) the 999 operator not expected to read the casualty's mind
c) ambulance control operating in their silo (and probably looking up the postcode for 'Cairngorm Mountain') :ugh: :ugh: :ugh:
so nothing to do with Police Scotland.

Police unification had a few hiccups in the early stages. The main one was picking idiots for Chief Constables. I have always said that I do miss Northern Constabulary and principally because they were a police force that understood that they couldn't do it all. That can be important in a patch like the Highlands and Islands. One really good thing PolScot did was creating the post of National SAR Co-ordinator and filling it competently.

The new police control room system could have been done better. Having the North one 350km south of the northern part of Scotland may have been an error. However the control room situation has settled down and the aforesaid co-ordinator tends to iron out any creases.

Old fuddy-duddies, yes, even older than me, seem to keep breezing in and trying to do a remake of the four yorkshireman sketch with a mountain rescue theme because it's not like the good old days. Off you go lads, never mind the P&J, the Edinburgh festival fringe is on: see if you can sell some tickets there.

Note that my post of 24th July refers to Qinetiq's Post-Implementation Report and highlights the reference they make to ambulance co-ordination.

[email protected] 15th Aug 2019 09:29

Lack of joined up communication has always been a problem with SAR but you get used to it in areas that don't have such a high call-out rate as the Cairngorms - police, ambulance, fire and rescue, CG all have their own protocols and have all suffered cuts in manpower over the years and the inevitable loss of experience.

Continuity planning doesn't seem to hold high favour when balanced against cutting costs.
​​​​​​​
Sadly, the casualty is often the one who suffers most in the delays to rescue and treatment while each element of the rescue services deals with its own priorities first.

JulieAndrews 16th Aug 2019 10:45

re self-policing of service levels - so once existing 'STANOs' retire, then the only personnel with any knowledge come from within the commercial entity that is our SAR service?

jimf671 16th Aug 2019 11:39


Originally Posted by JulieAndrews (Post 10546599)
re self-policing of service levels - so once existing 'STANOs' retire, then the only personnel with any knowledge come from within the commercial entity that is our SAR service?

Solutions?

EESDL 16th Aug 2019 12:17


Originally Posted by jimf671 (Post 10546641)
Solutions?

CAA-led centre of excellence :-). - a small dark office somewhere along the corridors of General Belgrano?
Thereby taking the current situation seriously enough to be able to maintain standards - regardless of operator - maybe a beefed-up version of the current CAA AOC FOI role?
Such credible oversight will cost money but shouldn’t that have been included in the bid ‘process’?

jimf671 16th Aug 2019 12:17


Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 10545623)
Lack of joined up communication has always been a problem with SAR but you get used to it in areas that don't have such a high call-out rate as the Cairngorms - police, ambulance, fire and rescue, CG all have their own protocols and have all suffered cuts in manpower over the years and the inevitable loss of experience.

Continuity planning doesn't seem to hold high favour when balanced against cutting costs.

Sadly, the casualty is often the one who suffers most in the delays to rescue and treatment while each element of the rescue services deals with its own priorities first.

To be fair, Police Scotland put some really good individuals in key positions and their efforts have paid off in honing a system that was never really planned at the beginning as a geographically inclusive one. The current N-Division commander seems to appreciate the issues and is keen to get this stuff right. People are sitting down and talking through the detail at divisional and national level, which is how it should be. Meanwhile, the revised Four Yorkshireman sketch continues in the background.

The Scottish Ambulance Service can be prone to the same silo thinking as other such services across the UK but has been a unified service with its own air wing for a considerable time so a lot of things work well. As elsewhere though, sometimes the boundary between an ordinary ambulance job and a mountain rescue can be hard to gauge and, as I stated above, the casualty or their companion making the 999 has a lot to do with making this fall into the correct category at the start. The 999 operator is not there to make those judgements and never will be. The responsibility for judging if the correct service has been selected then falls upon the first service control room handling the call. As in the case John Allen refers to, and the points in the Qinetiq PIR, the Yellow and Green Silo may need to open the windows and have a wee look outside.

On continuity, we need to remember that the age of the three year tourist is over and nearly all current crew members are in it for the long haul. Some have been on twitter recently scoffing at the RAF's attempts (£££) to woo old friends back into the fold for P8 crewing. Likewise ARCC, where the experience is starting to build. Now that the Qinetiq PIR has raised the issue of continuity, and thus it is possible it will become part of the contracted duty next time round, we may see a solution. I expect neither of us will shut up until we see the real deal!

[email protected] 16th Aug 2019 12:18

There are plenty of young (by my standards) guys and girls with plenty of experience to move up the tree to the standards jobs for many years to come - it just needs good succession planning and selecting the best person for the job rather than the next in line with seniority.

Several very experienced people have been ignored and not even given the chance for interview for some of the rearcrew jobs.

212man 16th Aug 2019 13:48


Originally Posted by jimf671 (Post 10546641)
Solutions?

Go back to the old system where the only personnel with any knowledge came from within the non-commercial entity that was our SAR service.

jimf671 29th Aug 2019 14:37

So let's imagine you have 30 minutes to tell a room full of rescue pilots from across the world about the UK SAR Helicopter Service and its implementation during the last four years. What do they need to know?

(Asking for a friend. :rolleyes:)

[email protected] 29th Aug 2019 15:52

They don't pay their rearcrew enough:ok:

jimf671 30th Aug 2019 02:11

Are you trying to get me into trouble Crab? :=


Does sound a bit familiar though. :rolleyes:

[email protected] 30th Aug 2019 19:40

Does the lack of positive response and plaudits speak for itself or are employees not allowed to comment?:E

Same again 30th Aug 2019 20:52

It may surprise you Crab but young people in SAR crewrooms these days have no interest in Rotorheads. NETFLIX and Tinder are the sites of choice.

detgnome 30th Aug 2019 22:21

Maybe they are just getting on with delivering an excellent service with up to date equipment and all on budget. Imagine that!

jeepys 30th Aug 2019 22:34

Crab,

what modern day SAR crews are now experiencing is life outside the military. It’s just a job but life outside work is becoming ever more so important than life behind the wire.
Family, Tinder, kids etc are featuring higher up on the priority list than work which is why they are not on here.


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