NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 15 – Kenya Airways has commenced its in-house aircraft simulator training for pilots after the simulator was evaluated, certified and accredited for training use by both the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) and the United Kingdom\’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).
With the certification, the airline\’s new simulator can now be used to offer the significant training to B737 pilots from all over the world at the airline\’s training centre in Embakasi, Nairobi.
Confirming the certification and accreditation, KQ Group Managing Director Titus Naikuni said issuance of the qualification was dependent on a successful technical evaluation and assessment of the Simulator Quality System.
"The system has to support the device for compliance with appropriate regulations and requires a rigorous exercise by the Joint Aviation Regulations to meet globally accepted Flight Simulation Training Devices standards," Mr Naikuni said.
The, B737-800W Next Generation simulator is a synthetic trainer, which offers a replicate to the actual flight deck layout and functionality, combined with both a visual and three-axis motion system.
It is used for training on aircraft standard operating procedures and for training pilots on emergency procedures, which cannot be done on an actual aircraft.
Mr Naikuni pointed out that Kenya Airways had contacted Boeing to provide training to the airline\’s instructors.
"After this we will be able to effectively conduct initial simulator training for our ab initio pilots (first stage). Currently, we are only conducting recurrent simulator training," he explained.
Before acquiring the simulator, Kenya Airways used to outsource simulator training for its pilots. Other than the high training costs, there was poor crew utilisation as it meant often travelling to Europe, Dubai, South Africa or Addis Ababa.
The Kenya Airways simulator is the only one of its kind in East and Central Africa. It is available for 20 hours a day, translating to training five sets of crew per day.
Last year, Kenya Airways partnered with Co-operative bank to finance a pilot training program as the airline continuously looks at route expansion.