Priority 1 Air Rescue (P1AR) has been awarded a 5-year contract with Air Force Global Strike Command for the provision of instructor-led basic aircraft systems training, hoist search and rescue (SAR), helicopter external sling load operations (HESLO), fast-rope/rappelling, night vision goggle (NVG) and M240 aerial gunnery training for up to 140 MH-139A Grey Wolf Special Missions Aviators (SMAs).

The first class of MG-139A SMAs graduated from the 4-week training programme at P1AR’s Search and Rescue/ Tactical Training Academy in Mesa, Arizona, in December 2023.

“Our partnership with the AFGSC team is dedicated to improving safety, training effectiveness and mission capability for the next generation of MH-139A SMAs,” said Brad Matheson, President of Priority 1 Air Rescue. “We continue to focus on enhancing our training programmes to support mission readiness for our Department of Defence (DoD) customers by leveraging innovation and our 25 years of mission training experience.

“Priority 1 Air Rescue has been employing virtual hoist simulators and hoist towers in our training programmes since 2012 and started hoisting on the newly delivered AB139 serial number #002 in 2006,” continued Matheson. “We have provided training services for 16 different commercial and para-public AW139 agencies worldwide while also performing operational SAR/ air ambulance mission services on the airframe ever since.”

“The graduation of the first class of MH-139A SMAs is testament to a great team effort to deliver comprehensive, proven training for the new generation of Grey Wolf SMAs,” said MSgt Andrew Blankenship. “Leveraging proven training programmes, synthetic training devices, and AW139 airframe mission experience is key to ensure the transition of our aircrew from the UH-1N to the MH-139A.”

Image: Priority 1 Air Rescue

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