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Multi-skilled training for ROYAL SAUDI AIR FORCE


Warton, UK - A new training programme that will produce the first multi-skilled Tornado aircraft technicians for the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) is up and running at BAE Systems Warton.

BAE Systems has helped design and will deliver a training-course that will reduce the numerous single-skill vocations currently used to maintain the RSAF Tornado fleet, to a set of multi-skilled trades. The multi-skilled ethos is one that the UK RAF has been operating for a number of years.

The first batch of RSAF students has arrived at BAE Systems’ Technical Training Academy for the final stage of the training programme before they return to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Warton element of the programme follows an intensive year at the RAF’s Defence College of Aeronautical Engineering, based at Cosford, Shropshire, which in turn came after six months of English language training, all of which is proceeded by a period spent at the Technical Studies Institute in Dhahran.

Chris Fairholm, Technical Academy Programme Manager at BAE Systems said: "The RSAF has taken the decision to multi-skill its technicians and we have worked closely with them to understand their needs and how we could integrate them within our training programme to ensure the training we provide meets their requirements.

“Following the year long course at RAF Cosford, where they learn basic aircraft skills in line with their respective trade, they come to Warton for a mixture of classroom based theory training and, importantly, specific on-the-job training, using the academy’s own Tornado aircraft – giving them invaluable experience in aircraft servicing and maintenance. This first batch of students will be equipped with the skills in one of four trades – airframe, propulsion, avionics, or electrical; and we are confident that this first cohort of students will be the first of many.”

When the students complete their training at Warton, they will return to Saudi Arabia where they will be deployed onto an RSAF Tornado squadron. Initially they will be assigned an experienced multi-skilled BAE Systems technician trainer who will perform some consolidation training to enable the student to become a fully qualified, multi-skilled technician.


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