19 April 2011
ADF's Bell 206B-1 Kiowa (image : Conway Bown)
OAKEY, Queensland -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] earlier this month reached the milestone of supporting the Australian Army's 27 Bell 206B-1 Kiowa helicopters for more than 60,000 flight hours. The achievement includes 180 hours of relief efforts following the recent cyclone and flooding in Queensland.
Boeing and its heritage companies have supported the Kiowa for 14 years. Since the Army Aviation Training & Training Support (AATTS) contract began in 2007, Boeing has trained more than 120 Kiowa pilots and performed ongoing maintenance tasks for 19 Kiowa training helicopters at the Army Aviation Training Centre in Oakey, and for the 173rd Aviation Squadron's eight transport Kiowas at Holsworthy, New South Wales.
"When Cyclone Yasi severely damaged north Queensland in February, the Australian Army supplied all available training and transport Kiowas to support Operation Yasi Assist," said Mark Brownsey, program manager for Boeing Defence Australia (BDA). "Boeing aircraft maintainers worked around the clock alongside the Army for two weeks to keep those Kiowas flying.
Congratulations to our AATTS team for achieving this milestone and for assisting the Army with its 2,000 training missions annually.""The support from BDA during the Queensland floods this year was simply outstanding, and the Army Aviation Training Centre aircraft and crews could not have conducted the lifesaving flying operations that they did without this one-team approach," said Col. Peter Steel, Commandant at the School of Army Aviation, Army Aviation Training Centre.
Boeing also trains the Army's Black Hawk helicopter pilots, aircrew and technicians at Oakey, and the service's CH-47D Chinook pilots and technicians at 5th Aviation Regiment in Townsville, north Queensland.
The company will continue to deliver the AATTS training and flight support program until the Australian Defence Force's Project Air 9000 Phase 7 -- Helicopter Aircrew Training System (HATS) -- comes into service. HATS will combine the delivery of Australian Army and Navy rotary wing training.