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FAA Warfare ASW Aircrewman Q and A.

#23
Really appreciate the replies. I'm sure more questions will come into my head over the next few weeks. Just another quick one - have any of you regretted your decision? I know it will have its ups and downs, but have the ups always outweighed the downs? Cheers.
 
#25
Really appreciate the replies. I'm sure more questions will come into my head over the next few weeks. Just another quick one - have any of you regretted your decision? I know it will have its ups and downs, but have the ups always outweighed the downs? Cheers.
Yes!! Lol!!!! :D

I applied in the mid 70's and aborted training. That I regretted.

Re-applied two years later and successfully passed. No regrets other than kicking myself for taking myself off the earlier course.

As for after training. Ups vs downs. Its human nature to block or forget the bad times but I can't honestly remember many bad times at all. As long as you can accept criticism good/bad. You'll be fine. Every sortie is debriefed. You never stop learning in aviation. Every days a school day. (Almost literally). You will listen to and give lectures. Preparation for flights usually took longer than the actual sortie.

A typical four hour sortie will have an element of ground preparation, then a pre flight brief. The flight itself followed by a debrief. Mar Dip may be able to elaborate on todays format as I am relating to 20+ years ago.
 
#27
What's the day to day life of an Aircrewman like? Both whilst at Culdrose and on board? Also, if anyone knows specifics of the phase 2 training process that would be appreciated. What to expect whilst at RAF Shawbury and the final training at Culdrose or Yeovilton. Thanks.
 
#28
Something similar to this, which is a taken from a reply I gave for a day in the life of an observer thread, cunningly adapted. You will notice that the roles and tasks are somewhat similar with varying degrees of responsibility.


Normal Pinger Aircrewman routine would be as follows.
0800 turn to, drink coffee check emails. Normally a roll of the dice decides who makes the wets!
0830- Shareholders. Aircrew meeting setting out the plan for the day, any changes to routines, aircraft serviceability and maybe a short lesson on an aviation subject.
0930 onwards would be a mixture of divisional work and secondary responsibilities. These are normally seniority based, ranging from a Assistant Survival Equip officer to SQN senior ACMN to SWO. There’s an ACMN training officer role as a Qualified ACMN instructor, map and charts lead, mission planning lead, underwater safety manager, sonics training officer, recognition ACMN, the list goes on. Much of the time is spent planning and preparing, either for the day, the week, the month. Probably preparing for an exercise as well or a detachment. Do not underestimate the Divisional work as a CPOACMN, normally managing and supporting a division of 6-10 ratings and senior rates. A normal day may include some physical training, most people run or go to the gym or swim.
Expect to fly most days or be in the simulator. A flight will range between 2 - 8 hours. Longer sorties are more common now covering many different flying and tactical profiles in one go. When does the day end? Tricky one. Could be an 8 hour day could be 13! Too many variables.
 
#30
I've said it before but flexibility was certainly a big part of an aircrewmans life.
As an example.
Took off for a four hour training flight. About an hour into it and we were re-tasked to go north, assume a Rescue Callsign and transfer a casualty. Resume original tasking - errr - NO. Another SAR tasking followed by yet another. A four hour sortie changed to an eleven hour flight.
Another.
Took off for a mountain winching training exercise. I returned home seven weeks later!!! Again, re-tasked to confirm the sighting of a periscope in UK territorial waters. (Inside an ASW sensitive area). All UK and US submarines locations indicated definitely not a friendly. After a short sonar search we were joined by another squadron aircraft and started refuelling from Benbecula. An overnight in Benny!!! Next night in Stornoway. Now a five aircraft ASW wing. Two more helicopters arrived just in time to embark upon RFA Argos who had her work up in Portland stopped to embark the new air wing. We searched and prosecuted contacts for the next six weeks until the suspect was lost in deep water. (Pre passive days). We did have two Nimrods assisting.
So the moral.
Be prepared to be prepared. In aviation things changed quickly!!
 
#31
4 ASW Aircrewman received their Wings today, all are already serving on the front line Squadrons 820 and 814. Very shortly they will also all be promoted Acting POACMN, once they have completed their leadership courses.

2 of them will catch up with QLNZ with 820 now deployed and those on 814 will be off to Exercise Dynamic Manta Sicily.