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UK records low serviceability for Hawk T2 jet trainer

The UK has 28 Hawk T2 trainer aircraft, of which between six and 11 were recorded as being serviceable throughout February 2024. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has reported extremely low serviceability rates for the BAE Systems Hawk T2 trainer aircraft that it uses to train its fast jet pilots.

Answering questions in the House of Commons on 13 March, Minister of State for the Armed Forces at the MoD James Heappey disclosed that for February the serviceability rate for the advanced jet trainer aircraft had varied from a low of 21% to a high of 39%.

The Royal Air Force (RAF) operates 28 Hawk T2 jets to train both its own and the Royal Navy's (RN's) fast jet pilots at RAF Valley in Wales, with the type having entered service in 2009. For February Heappey recorded serviceability rates that started the month at nine aircraft, rose to a high of 11 aircraft, and dipped to a low of six aircraft before closing out the month on seven aircraft. The Qatar Emiri Air Force also operates nine Hawk Mk 167 (essentially the same as the T2) aircraft at RAF Leeming, but these are not included in the MoD figures.

The MoD uses the Hawk T2 for its Advanced Fast Jet Training (AFJT) programme, which sits outside the scope of the UK Military Flight Training System (UKMFTS) programme contracted to Ascent. Hawk availability is the responsibility of BAE Systems as the original equipment manufacturer (OEM).

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