British Aircrews Complete Deck Landing Qualifications

Eleven months after 846 Naval Air Squadron reformed with the Merlin Mk3 helicopter, the crews completed their Deck Landing qualifications on the Royal Fleet Auxilary (RFA) Argus.

For a number of 846 NAS aircrew this was the first time in over three years they had operated with a ship due to being on exchange with the RAF whilst undergoing conversion training from the Sea King Mk4 to the Merlin Mk3 at RAF Benson.

Once all the crews had conducted the vital Simulator Deck Landing Practice, the squadron made their way to RFA Argus positioned off Portland.

The Squadron re-qualified five crews in day/night and Night Vision Devices (NVD) deck landings within the first week.

A week of consolidation training was completed on RFA Argus following the initial training package before the crews were tasked to conduct further Deck Landings on HMS Ocean.

A challenging week followed as 27 Sqn (RAF) were also embarked with three Chinooks conducting their initial Deck Qualifications prior to deploying on Cougar 15.

Alongside the aircrew training, an equally important part of these steps was for the aircraft engineers of 846 NAS to deploy on board and reacquaint themselves with operations at sea.

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Images: Royal Navy