Flying Doctor invests in unique first

09/12/2015 - 10:57

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The Royal Flying Doctor Service is seeking to buy what will be the first flight simulator of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere, as part of plans to develop a state-of-the-art training centre in Western Australia.

A pilot using the PC12 simulator.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service is seeking to buy what will be the first flight simulator of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere, as part of plans to develop a state-of-the-art training centre in Western Australia.

RFDS chief executive Grahame Marshall said the charity, which is the state’s second biggest (according to BNiQ), was seeking support from corporates to help fund and partner with the new centre.

The new centre, to be named the RFDS Centre of Excellence, will be built at Jandakot Airport and house a Pilatus PC12 flight simulator.

The facility is being designed to provide 24-hour, year-round access to PC12 pilot training, ongoing certification and accreditation for RFDS pilots and other PC12 operators in Australia.

Mr Marshall said buying the flight simulator would save RFDS a considerable amount of money that it currently spent sending its pilots overseas for training.

It would also reduce the need for the RFDS to use operational aircraft for training, which can leave them available to respond to medical emergencies, he said.

There are 60 PC12 aircraft in Australia and its understood other operators besides the RFDS include the Western Australia Police Service, the Northern Territory Police Force, and several private operators, all of which have expressed interest in paying to use the simulator.

This potential income stream will be used to boost the charity’s revenue, which fell in 2014-15 to $85.8 million, from $101.1 million in 2013-14.

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