Help is available to Australian aviators “troubled by the experiences they saw,” RAAF Air Vice Marshal Darren Goldie says
FILE PHOTO: An Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18F Super Hornet aircraft refuelling in the air. © AFP / Mick Davis
Pilots of Royal Australian Air Force are being offered psychological assistance after aerial encounters with Chinese warplanes over the South China Sea, RAAF Air Commander, Air Vice Marshal Darren Goldie has said.
“The mental health of our aviators and people… coming in contact with things like intercepts or challenges on the radio… it’s important that when we bring them back, we talk to them about the experience,” Goldie told ABC on Sunday.
The RAAF keeps pilots informed about “what services are available, should they be troubled by the experiences they saw,” he added.
Special attention is being given to the wellbeing of aviators who aren’t in the pilot’s seat, as they have less control in tense encounters, the air vice marshal said.
According to Goldie, the preparation of Australian airmen for missions has also evolved as “we’ve seen the operational environment change” above the South China Sea.