• Boeing’s Helicopter Aircrew Training System keeps NSW Police flying high during pandemic

    January 20, 2021

    Boeing Defence Australia’s (BDA) world-leading Helicopter Aircrew Training System (HATS) has provided training device support and sustainment activities to keep New South Wales (NSW) Police Aviation flying during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    HATS was set up at HMAS Albatross at Nowra, NSW to support the Royal Australian Navy Fleet Air Arm 723 Squadron to train generations of Navy and Australian Army aircrew transitioning to Australia’s future combat helicopters.

    When the NSW Police could not access their usual overseas training last September due to the pandemic travel restrictions, HATS banded together with Defence and industry partners to provide EC-135 aircraft simulator instruction so the Force could keep its aircraft flying.

    It marks the first time a rotary wing flight simulator has achieved dual military and civilian qualifications in Australia.

    BDA’s director of Sustainment Operations, Amy List, said the project’s success was due to the collaboration and teamwork between HATS and NSW Police, Defence, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Thales Australia, which delivers the HATS synthetic training device support and sustainment under subcontract to BDA.

    “Despite the challenges of the pandemic, HATS was able to deliver to both our customer and the NSW Police to ensure officers gained the necessary training and qualifications,” List said.

    Director General Navy Aviation, Aircrew Training and Commons Commodore Darren Rae praised all involved.

    “The team in the Navy Aviation Systems Program Office worked across multiple government organisations and industry partners to achieve this outstanding outcome for the NSW Police,” Commodore Rae said.

    “A tremendous effort was required from the Systems Program Office and our partners at Boeing Defence Australia and Thales Australia to meet the rigorous requirements of civilian qualification in a compressed timeframe.”

    NSW Police Aviation Commander Superintendent Matt Appleton, said the simulation training allowed the Force to “continue to provide excellent service to the people of NSW.”

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