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Swiss Air-Rescue Rega, to home page

Pilot, helicopter – Job description

The helicopter pilot is responsible for safely carrying out rescue flights during the day and at night, as well as according to both visual and instrument flight rules. This encompasses, in particular, making all the necessary flight preparations and deciding whether from an aeronautical point of view a mission can be carried out in safety. The scope of activities ranges from primary missions to inter-hospital transports through to highly complex and demanding rescue flights in mountainous regions using the rescue hoist or long line.

Professional requirements

  • Completed vocational apprenticeship, equivalent education, or training as a military helicopter pilot (preferably also experience in the private sector)
  • Maximum age at the time of recruitment: 45 years old
  • Valid EASA licence as a professional helicopter pilot extended to cover flying at night and in mountainous regions
  • ATPL/H Theory
  • Radio telephony in English as well as in the respective national language of the operational base
  • Successful completion of an aptitude test conducted by external experts
  • Check flight under the supervision of a Rega flight instructor
  • First-aid course (completed within 12 months before commencing employment)

Helicopter flying experience

  • 2,000 hours, at least 1,000 of which in turbine helicopters
  • Experience in performing transport flights - at least 3 years' experience in flying commercial or military helicopter operations

Personal requirements

  • Mature character, capacity to accurately assess your own abilities and ability to work in a team
  • Ability to work under pressure, both physically and mentally
  • Helpfulness and flexibility, idealism and high level of motivation
  • Absolute reliability
  • Ability to communicate statements and decisions clearly and concisely
  • Willingness to work irregular hours
  • Person of good repute
  • Must live within easy travelling distance of the helicopter base

Language requirements

  • Very good language skills in German and English
  • Depending on the workplace, very good language skills in French or Italian

Basic training to become a helicopter pilot must be undertaken at an approved flight school (ATO). A list of certified helicopter flight schools in Switzerland can be obtained from the Federal Office for Civil Aviation (FOCA), tel. +41 31 325 80 39 or from the Aero-Club of Switzerland, tel. +41 41 375 01 01.

Youth development programme for helicopter pilots

Rega does not provide basic training for helicopter pilots itself, but instead supports specially selected up-and-coming helicopter pilots through its own youth development programme. Candidates can only apply for selection if they are in possession of a letter of recommendation from a Swiss partner helicopter firm. The requirements as well as further information can be found on the information sheet, Youth Development Programme for Helicopter Pilots.