Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

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Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

Postby SilverShadow » Tue Mar 26, 2013 6:24 pm

Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

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Bristow has been awarded a contract to operate helicopters in Shetland and the Western Isles

A private company will take over the UK's helicopter search and rescue operations, the Department for Transport has announced.

The Bristow Group has won a 10-year contract to run the service from 2015.

The £1.6bn deal ends 70 years of search and rescue from the RAF and Royal Navy.

Bristow will replace ageing RAF and Royal Navy Sea King helicopters with modern Sikorsky S-92s and AgustaWestland 189s. Under the new contract, 22 helicopters will operate from 10 locations around the UK.

Ten S-92s will be based, two per site, at Stornoway and Sumburgh, and at new bases at Newquay, Caernarfon and Humberside airports.

Ten AW189s will operate, two per site, from Lee-on-the-Solent and a new hangar at Prestwick airport, and new bases which will be established at St Athan, Inverness and Manston airports. All bases will be operational 24 hours a day, and half of the new fleet will be built in Yeovil, Somerset.

Full story here...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21934077
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK search and rescue from RAF

Postby SilverShadow » Tue Mar 26, 2013 6:30 pm

I'm really sad to hear about this news and really doesn't make any sense, first we let the French be responsible for some of our most important military assets and now we are selling our Seakings off because they are outdated and letting our much loved Search and Rescue be taken over by a private company called The Bristow Group?

Wouldn't it be easier and a lot better to use what we have and the infrastructure in place and update that as we go along?

I will miss the sight of the Seakings, very iconic IMO and a special part of our history and heritage :(

I wonder how this will affect SAR comms, I'm guessing they will stick to the same bandplans and frequencies.

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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK search and rescue from RAF

Postby 2E0AIV » Tue Mar 26, 2013 7:14 pm

Living on the Coast i have regularly listened to "Rescue 123" on the marine channels and seen the helicopters during search and rescue operations from my house (i live on the cliffs), in fact i have worked professionally with Rescue 123 on search and rescue operations before retirement. This is a sign of the times, lets try and save money by privatisation, which does not end up saving money in the long run. What private company would take on a contract to loose money? Obviously None!

Alas this country has gone to the dogs, and i doubt we will ever recover. We are already loosing our Coast Guard operations Centre at Gt. Yarmouth, our emergency services are being decimated.

The lunatics are definitely running the asylum :(

End of Rant !!!!!
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK search and rescue from RAF

Postby 2E0AIV » Tue Mar 26, 2013 7:16 pm

P.s. Bristow helecopters currently run all the Gas Rig contracts off the Anglia Coast and pass over my house several times a day, ferrying Gas workers to the Gas Platforms and i know a pilot that works for them. However, none of them have emergency rescue training that i am aware of like our RAF boys who are the best.
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK search and rescue from RAF

Postby SilverShadow » Tue Mar 26, 2013 7:40 pm

I agree, I'm guessing some people at the top are making a lot of money out of this deal because there is no way this can be good for our country.

The RAF are our boys and we love them, search and rescue is best in the hands of our military and not another countries business. All the training and knowledge of the land not to mention experience will not be put to use and replaced with another countries service that has no experience of the land or day to day SAR ops and as a result our SAR service is for sure to suffer badly.

I really do not like this corporate business world we live in today and I will miss the Seakings :(
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

Postby Crazylegs » Tue Mar 26, 2013 8:47 pm

What a joke!

Its already gone to the dogs went years ago! :x
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

Postby 2E0AIV » Tue Mar 26, 2013 9:21 pm

Just wait for a couple of years after they take over and then bump up the price by another couple of million a year, Govt will have no choice but to pay as they will not have the resources to cover if Bristow's pull out (basic privatisation trick) ................... Even a child can see that..................How can our Govt NOT ?
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

Postby Alfie » Tue Mar 26, 2013 9:53 pm

a very sad time we live in how can they do this ?

on a plus note bristow have been doing search and rescue since the mid 70s so are not complete newbies to this but this is very sad news nontheless
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK search and rescue from RAF

Postby M3TSY » Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:30 pm

SilverShadow wrote:I wonder how this will affect SAR comms, I'm guessing they will stick to the same bandplans and frequencies.

I'm sure the standard frequencies will be the same, the Bristow helicopters boast a multiple communications systems, including (and I quote) high frequency, VHF AM/FM radio, UHF radio, satellite communications, satellite tracking of the helicopter, marine vessel transponder, secure communications capabilities and wireless intercoms.

Also Bristow G-MCGB was heard talking to Kinloss Rescue on the usual 5680khz the other day so on the coms front all appears to stay the same. It really is a shame to see our Seakings go and a business take over but these Bristow helicopters are well equipped for the job, lets just hope they won't require your credit card number to save you :wink:
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Re: Bristow Group to take over UK Search and Rescue from RAF

Postby m0lsx » Thu Nov 19, 2015 7:35 pm

One of the Sikorsky S-92A's is currently showing up on both the free FR24 & the free AIS shipping system, it is currently off the South Yorkshire coast.

Edited to add. this post has been added to several relevant threads, so anyone interested in SAR activity can find it..
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