CH-53 and “Black Hawk” squadrons took part in a competitive exercise dealing with real-time decision making under pressure
Squadrons operating CH-53 “Yas’ur and “Black Hawk” helicopters participated in an annual competition during which they faced various missions: evacuation of wounded from abroad, rescuing ejected pilot and transportation of forces. The comprehensive competition took place in southern and central Israel and included cooperation with ground forces.
“The object of the exercise is maintaining full operational competency for missions relevant to our division”, explained Lieutenant Ohad who led the exercise in the “Black Hawk” “Rolling Sword” squadron. “The competitive side is also important as the squadrons study every mission and deliberate in order to carry it out on the best side”.
Final Result is the Name of the Game
The gaps between the different platforms of helicopters are bridged by creating an identical training field. “The challenge of uncertainty is present in all of the missions”, added Lieutenant Ohad. “The teams don’t know what will come next. They board the aircraft after given very little information regarding the mission and begin to connect the dots only after the forces in the field inform them about the location of the force, the status of the wounded, etc. They must prioritize in real time”.
One of the main challenges is the surprises that can always rise up in the battlefield and force the helicopter pilots to react in the best way. “They can only guess what mission lies ahead based on the limited information they have received in the debriefing”, said Major Eilon who is in charge on helicopters exercises in the Air Division. “This challenge is added to the need to make real-time decisions under pressure – a critical capability for an aircrew member. A problem can always rise and disturb the execution of the mission”.
The squadron that will demonstrate the best performance will win a trophy in a special evening in the IAF Center. “The virtue of the IAF is its ability to provide the best final result at all times”, added Major Eilon.