Stalbridge, UK, 10th February 2021; In a contract placed with Survival Systems Limited of Dartmouth, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada in June 2020, the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) ordered two Helicopter Underwater Escape Training Systems (HUETS) for delivery to the Royal Navy Centre for Maritime SERE and Underwater Escape Training (RNCMSUET). To meet this requirement SSL have provided proprietary Modular Egress Training Simulators (METS®); a Model 5 representing the WILDCAT and similar aircraft and the Model 40, which represents the MERLIN and similar aircraft. Delivery, Commissioning and Training are now complete. Concurrently, two leased units have been recovered from RNCMSUET and returned to Canada.

Commenting on the contract, Paul Douglas, President and Chief Executive Officer of SSL, said “My thanks to all at SSL, MOD the RN and Lutra for the way in which we have been able to deal with this order. For all of us, working under different COVID regimes, time zones, often from unfamiliar locations, and with different working patterns, has been a challenge. Everyone has risen to it with understanding and flexibility.”

To help with the delivery of this contract Lutra assisted in the clearance of shipments caught in ports and customs by multiple issues arising from COVID and BREXIT and unsnagging shipments caught up in a delivery failure at a major courier company. This involved a considerable degree of liaison with the Royal Navy to facilitate reception arrangements and then change them as the import and shipping situations unfolded. Lutra also handled the administrative issues such as accommodation and sourcing COVID “fit to fly” tests for the SSL commissioning and training team for their stay and return.

Lutra had previously assisted with the delivery of the two Leased METS® to RNCMSUET. These had to be retrieved, packed, secured, out loaded and returned to Canada. Lutra organised this operation, hiring specialist contractors and coordinating it with the arrival and commissioning of the new units to minimise disruption to use of the Dunker for training by the Royal Navy and other members of the Armed Forces.

Commenting on the activity Tim Otter, Chief Executive of Lutra, said “This would have been a complex activity in any event, but in the current climate it was especially tricky. Rescheduled ships, and packages going astray in ports of entry and transit depots were significant challenges. My thanks go to all at SSL, Yeovilton and the Dunker team specifically, and the specialist logistics companies who displayed patience, flexibility and good humour in getting this delivery and retrieval mission completed. It would have been difficult to co-ordinate from Canada, which demonstrated the utility of the local representative, which often goes beyond the typical “help to market” activity. We were delighted to help. My thanks to Zenith International Freight, Sterling Global Marine and Advantage Digital Print for their help and professional services


Based in Dartmouth, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, SSL is a privately owned company that specialises in the provision of simulators used in the delivery of water and fire survival training to the offshore, maritime, and defence sectors. Through Research and Development, SSL strives to provide equipment and training that exceed industry standards, providing the most realistic and safest training environment for students and instructors. Transferring this R&D to operational performance-oriented training is key to SSL’s philosophy of operation and purpose: “to enhance and preserve workers’ lives”. This purpose drives SSL to provide top of the range capabilities which have resulted in prestigious Armed Forces and commercial training centre clients in 35 countries. The clients use SSL products and training to prepare for incidents involving helicopters, small aircraft (including fast jets), small craft, amphibious vehicles and oil rigs. Fire training is also available.

For More Information about SSL Contact

Paul Douglas President & CEO or Trish Tully VP – Marketing & Sales +1 902 407 6387

In UK: Tim Otter +44 7748090802 or +44 1963 204239


Based at Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton (HMS Heron) the RNCMSERE&UET (Royal Navy Centre of Maritime Survive, Evade, Resist, Extract and Underwater Escape Training) is responsible for training all HM Forces personnel who fly over water in helicopters. This includes specialist aircrew and passengers from all three services, as well as MOD civilians/contractors conducting training/trails and UK police teams involved in UK maritime counter terrorism. The Royal Navy has a long and distinguished history in developing dunkers dating back to the 1950’s. The current HUET centre is a world leading facility and opened in March 2019.

The facility teaches the procedures to follow whilst in an aircraft as it hits the water and sinks below the surface, day or night. Students are then taught how to safely exit the aircraft whilst it is fully submerged under the water and return to the surface. Once ‘Dunked’, students are taught how to operate their life rafts and survival aids in the state-of-the-art environmental pool. The environmental pool is equipped to simulate sea state 6 inclusive of wind, rain and sea spray. Training culminates in being winched out of the water, to simulate their retrieval by a Search and Rescue aircraft.


Lutra Associates is a consultancy firm that, amongst other things, helps companies bring their products to market in the Defence and Security Sectors in the UK and internationally. It assists SSL in UK.

For more information contact:

Tim Otter, Chief Executive

+44 1963204239 or +44 7748090802