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RCP1209_040-048_On Final Approach 1/2/10 11:06 PM Page 41
“Nah, came to the Gulf straight from Training methods change, and they I waited a few minutes, tried to com-
Nam.” should. When we can develop new train- pose myself, and approached the “Senior”
“Oh, so what you mean is simply be- ing methods, cost effective methods, we pilot.
cause a new pilot went through training should implement them. But the one as- I said, “Hey man, can we talk?”
in an R22 that somehow he isn’t as quali- pect of training that many of us have been “What do you want?” was his sarcasti-
fied?” the most reluctant to share is our own ex- cally toned reply.
“Oh, you know what I mean, it just is- perience, mentoring those new to our pro- “You are one of the more experienced
n’t the same anymore.” fession. I’d like to share one more story. guys around here, and this new guy looks
Yes, I do know what you mean, and While I was working in the Gulf of to you to help him out, and you nuke him.
that is not necessarily a bad thing. Mexico a few years back I, again, over- Imagine for a minute what he is thinking
The days of the Armed Forces being heard a conversation which really set me right now.” The look on this “Senior” pi-
the largest provider of trained helicopter back. An obviously new, VFR Bell 206, lot’s face was priceless.
pilots are quickly coming to an end. The pilot had entered the pilot lounge and To his credit the “Senior” pilot re-
military, by design, has reduced the num- asked, to no one in particular, “Can some- thought his position, tracked the new pilot
ber of pilots graduated each year for the one show me where the IFR missed ap- down, and spent the better part of the next
past dozen, or more years. This trend will proach points are out here?” hour explaining the Gulf of Mexico IFR
continue. The advent and fielding of Un- “What the hell do you need to know system. This is what should have hap-
manned Aerial Vehicles during the past for, you’re just a little ship driver.”, was pened in the first place.
five years alone strongly suggest that our the response from one of the more “sea- Make no mistake about it, these new pi-
military simply will not need the number soned” IFR Captains. I was floored. Here lots are here to replace us and they are
of helicopter pilots as in years past. But, was a young pilot, asking a very appro- ambitious. We, as a group, have an enor-
the numbers of civil aircraft, new and used priate question, and he gets flamed by a mous amount of experience and it is our
have been on the rise….So, where will the “Senior” pilot. This young pilot did not job to share that experience and do what-
helicopter pilots of the future come from? say another word, turned on his heels, and ever we can to insure all that “experience”
You guessed it. departed. I was furious. is not wasted. Share it. • Heli-Expo 2010 Preview Issue 41
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