Friday, 6 May 2011

European Helicopter Training Programme

The Helicopter Training Program (HTP) concept was approved at the European Defence Agency’s Steering Board (SB) MOD in November 2009. The aim of the HTP is to provide a framework for participating Member States (pMS) in order to allow them to develop, consolidate and share best practices and to meet the challenges of flying helicopters in the difficult operational environments.

By the end of 2010, the EDA had delivered two exercises, one in Gap, France, the other one in Logrono, Spain. The first Helicopter Tactics Symposium took place in December 2010, hosted by Luxembourg.

Italy is hosting the next HTP exercise, IT CALL 2011, under EDA’s auspices. IT CALL 11 is a live exercise (LIVEX) helicopter training exercise scheduled by the Italian Defence General Staff and the European Defence Agency from 23 May to 4 June 2011.

The Italian Defence General Staff tasked the Italian Army Aviation (IAA, in Italian, “Aviazione dell'Esercito”) Headquarters (HQ) to organize and conduct a multinational helicopter exercise, in close cooperation with the Italian Army, the Navy and the Air Force. The IAA HQ will plan and execute a helicopter multinational exercise within the framework of the EDA HTP, reinforced by the experience gained in operating helicopters in multinational tactical operations and past helicopter exercises.

IT CALL 2011 is a Pre-Deployment Training (PDT) /Mission Specific Training (MST) exercise prior to going on International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) operations as it provides a further opportunity to conduct live training. The aim is to train European crews and staff elements to operate in a hot, dry and dusty environment adopting joint procedures while operating as a joint/combined aviation battalion during Crisis Response Operations (CRO) in a single party day/night live exercise.

The exercise consists of two parts, and takes place in Italian territory, specifically in Viterbo (LIR-53 restricted training area) for cross training/CPX. Training activities are executed within a coherent operational scenario that refers to the actual Theatre of Operations. A comprehensive array of training events is offered for each phase.