A.190 – Provision of Flight Engineers for Certain Types of Heavy Bomber and Flying Boat Aircraft

In the establishment of certain types of heavy bomber and flying boat squadrons provision is made for a post of flight engineer. The duties and responsibilities of flight engineers and the method of selection and training of airmen to qualify are as detailed in the following paragraphs.

(i) To operate certain controls at the engineer’s station and watch appropriate gauges as indicated in the relevant Air Publications.
(ii) To advise the captain of the aircraft as to the functioning of the engines and the fuel, oil and cooling systems both before and during flight.
(iii) To ensure effective liason between the captain of the aircraft and the maintenance staff, by communicating to the latter such technical notes regarding the performance of the aircraft in flight as may be required.
(iv) To carry out practicable emergency repairs during flight.
(v) To act as standby gunner.

Eligibility – Flight engineers will be selected from airmen mustered as fitter 1, fitter 2, fitter 2 (engines) and fitter 2 (aero-engines) including airmen already mustered as air gunners who have the necessary trade qualifications. The rank of the post will be that of sergeant but selection will be open to suitably qualified corporals and LA Cs with exceptional qualifications.

Medical standards – Selected airmen will require to be category A3B and arrangement should be made for their medical examination at their stations. Forms 42 should be completed accordingly.

Training -Airmen will be required to undergo courses as follows:
(i) A 3 week course of air gunnery training at a Bombing and Gunnery School
followed by –
(ii) Short courses of training at manufacturers works.
On satisfactory completion of these courses, operational training will be undertaken.

On satisfactory completion of prescribed courses of training mentioned in 5i and
5ii above, airmen will be remustered to flight engineer and where necessary promoted
to temporary sergeants in their trades on the authority of the Air Officer i/c Records.

While undergoing a course at a Bombing and Gunnery School, airmen will receive flying instructional pay at the rate of ls 0d a day, under the general conditions of Para 3458 of KRs and AC’s and on posting for duty as flight engineers they will be entitled to air gunner and crew pay under the provisions of Paras 345 5 and 345 7 of KRs and ACis, they will also remain on their trade roster for promotion.

Flight engineers, while appearing as such in establishment will normally be designated by their trade mustering followed by “flight engineer” in brackets, e.g. Fitter 1 (Flight Engineer). This may be shortened to Fitter 1 (FE).

The Air Officer i/c Records will be responsible for the posting of flight engineers.

The names of volunteers who have the requisite qualifications and who can be
recommended are to be forwarded by COs to the Air Officer i/c Records. In making
recommendations COs should be satisfied that besides posse.ssing the necessary qualifications
airmen are of a type suitable to discharge the duties of air gunner. Following the
initial recommendations, further lists will continue to be forwarded by COs to the Air
Officer i/c Records on 1 July and 1 October 1941 and thereafter on I January, 1 April,
1 July and 1 October in each year.

The mustering of airmen now undergoing training as flight engineers but who do not possess the qualifications in Para 3 above will exceptionally be considered. Their names and particulars should be forwarded by COs to the Air Officer i/c Records who will transmit this information together with his recommendations to the Air Ministry (P3).