Navy pilot trainers setting records

For the past two years, 723 Squadron – Joint Helicopter School has increased the output of trained aircrew by 50 per cent, increasing the number of graduations per year and setting new monthly flying records on multiple occasions.

CAPTION: Commander Fleet Aviation Arm Commodore David Frost presents the 2022 McNichol Trophy to then Seaman Joshua Williams (left) and Commanding Officer 723 Squadron Commander Samuel Dale during a gathering at 723 Squadron, HMAS Albatross. Story by Sam Carter. Photo by Petty Officer Peter Thompson.

723 Squadron and all elements of the helicopter aircrew training system came together at HMAS Albatross recently to celebrate this achievement.

It attracted high-profile attention, with leadership representatives of Navy and Boeing Defence Australia attending to congratulate the team that made it happen.

723 Squadron delivers helicopter training to Navy’s and Army’s aspiring aircrew on the EC-135 training helicopter.

The squadron works very closely with, and is well-supported by, Boeing Defence Australia, Thales and Capability Acquisition & Sustainment Group.

Each element of the enterprise contributes to the overall outcome, and the alignment and collaboration across the group was recognised during the celebration.

Boeing Defence Australia’s Chief Operating Officer and Director of Sustainment Operations Amy List appreciated the work conducted across the helicopter aircrew training system enterprise.

“We are always hearing awesome things about the team in Nowra. What is being done here is truly monumental and everyone who has taken part should be very proud of the capability provided by this unit,” she said.

Commander Fleet Aviation Arm Commodore David Frost said the collaboration between ADF and industry partners was vital to meet ADF requirements.

“723 Squadron and its partners are critical to delivering warfighters to both Army and Navy,”  Commodore Frost said.

723 Squadron was also presented with the 2022 McNichol Trophy, which was received by Commanding Officer Commander Sam Dale and the youngest member of the unit, Seaman Josh Williams.

The McNichol Trophy is awarded to the squadron or support unit which has been foremost in all aspects of aviation operations, safety, reliability and unit-level training.


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