Training Testimonials

I’m a Roving operator out of Drum.  I’ve taken the “Flying in a wire obstructed environment” training which also included “Crew Resource Management”.  This was some of the best training I’ve ever received at PG&E and all my co-workers who have taken the class agree.  This direct approach to staying safe and aware can apply to all lines of our work.  Just like flying in a helicopter the risks in working with high voltage are extremely high and we may not get a second chance if things were to go wrong.  We are always being asked “what are we doing to stay safe and how could we improve our safety culture”.  I always respond with this Helicopter training was the best and most direct training PG&E has ever provided with emphasis on staying alive and keeping your alertness level in the yellow.  Additionally the CRM portion emphasizes looking out for each other and situational awareness.

Pacific Gas & Electric
January 14, 2016

I just wanted to thank you for the class you presented at UC Davis. I just recently retired after twenty years of volunteering on the local Mountain Search and Rescue team. I have just run hundreds of missions, several of which were in Helicopters and fixed wings. I have had several helitech trainings. I also grew up with a Mother and Great Uncle who were pilots.

I must say that your class was one of the most informative classes I have ever had the pleasure of taking. I came with the expectation (attitude) of what could I learn since I have taken so many other courses. I was pleasantly surprised. I take with me some new knowledge that I will put to good use. Thank you again for the class.

California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife
September 15, 2015

The Brookings Project Team would like to personally thank you (Gerry) and Utilities Aviation Services for all of their helicopter expertise over the last two years. Your insight into all areas with safety being the most important has been extremely beneficial to our project team

Great River Energy
September 1, 2015

Thanks again for the Presentation yesterday in Melbourne about the Flying in The Wire Environment. 
Despite the quiet room it was a very good experience and the information we have taken onboard is enormous and something we will be able to use for the rest of our lives. 

Please say many thanks to Bob on our behalf from the team at Heli Adventures Tasmania / Cradle Mountain Helicopters.

Thanks for his energy , the presentation was vivid and perfect in length vs content. 

Johan / Adam

A pilot in the company that I work for (me) had a near miss recently and another pilot saw that I was going the wrong way, but didn’t speak up.  We believe (because he is junior to me) that didn’t feel that it was right to speak up – cockpit/aircraft command gradient.   So put us down for one seat in Melbourne, even if I have to pay for him myself.

Col Clark

In 2009 I attended a CRM Wire & Obstruction Environment Seminar with Bob,I learnt a huge amount,I the attended the Low level course, Bob is one of the finest lecturers it has been my pleasure to be educated by, His easy going, flowing way of imparting knowledge is inspirational and spell binding, His partner Lynn is the perfect partner for the role. I train bushfire firefighters and know how quickly you can lose the plot...Never happens with Bob. Keep him as long as you can, He is saving lives.

Lex Wade AFSM
Air Attack Supervisor
Victoria AUST


Wow is all I can say about all the different things my comrade and I learned in the safety course. What really saddens me is the fact so many great people have lost their lives in what could have been prevented if they would have had C R M! I am very thankful for you wonderful people who have made it their lives to make sure that the rest of us are flying safely and without incident! I am a single Mom with 5 kids and it is very important for me to come home safe every single day! My oldest is 24 then it goes 21,19, 12, and 9. I wanted to ask my boss what his thoughts were about having your company speak at one of our safety day training seminars and go from there. I believe that so many other people are missing out on this very important training. Will keep in touch with you to see what his thoughts are. Hope your trip to your next destination is a safe one and a warmer one! Thank you again for everything.

Best Regards,


The following quotes were taken off the Australian Pilot Forum - Bladeslapper

1. To those that believe this is the equivalent box ticking exercise of the Dangerous Goods or CRM you a sorely mistaken. This is the one course that I believe should be part of the initial licence issue as it has a greater chance of saving your bum than all of your emergency training put together. Once you leave the airport environment you are in the wire environment and they can be anywhere, even above the poles they are supposed to be attached to. It teaches techniques on how to locate wires that you just don't think of and various illusions that will play tricks on you. I think casa should subsidize the course instead of printing those posters with the picture of barbed wire fence (the only wire avoidance information I have ever seen from them).

2. This is a safety video on Surviving the Wire Environment published on the HAI web site. I encourage all of my students to watch it. It wont play on the iPad, it needs flash player to work. Bob Feest is the main presenter.

3. ... it has a greater chance of saving your bum than all of your emergency training put together. Once you leave the airport environment you are in the wire environment and they can be anywhere, even above the poles they are supposed to be attached ...

-Bladeslapper Pilot Forum User

Just a quick note to mention that last week's wire awareness course in Brisbane (Aug 2012) was in my personal opinion one of the best CRM course I have attended thank you for organizing it. There is no doubt that the right course content and lecturer makes a huge difference in the presentation of this topic and I would recommend that course over the recent online experience we just completed.



Air crew

Cairns, Australia

Hello Lynette,

Hi Lyn, Thank you so much for another excellent day yesterday. I was yet again absolutely absorbed from start to finish. We all were. Actually, I was interested to see how our chief pilot, Luke, was going to respond to the course. It was his first 'Bob experience', and I just knew he was thinking 'how can someone talk about wires all day and keep it interesting'! I knew Bob would grab his interest and suck him in all day, but I was keen to see how quickly.... I confirm this is a world record. Luke, who is normally very laid back, was bolt upright and fully engaged within minutes! Bob is the master of all mankind when it comes to courses.

It was also interesting sitting in the back of the room and observing the full audience, and I could see Bobs magic spread around the room very evenly. I am sure you both know what a great job you are doing, your team work is exceptional. However, I just wanted to personally thank you on behalf of myself, Luke and Graeme for such a great day. We mainly fly R44's and Squirrels and focus mostly on Charters and occasional AWK. Your course has been the most all encompassing and thorough course that I have attended, and even for such a small company as ours it has stepped up our safety and awareness to another level. I was out flying the day before the course, bouncing around the Brokenback mountain ranges with a photographer getting images of remote properties set within the valleys, and my brain was scanning and focusing on wires and poles that I would never have seen if it wasn't for Bobs course a couple of years ago. His message stays ingrained, and it was hugely beneficial to have it topped up again yesterday. I picked up the new bits of the course and it reinforced the important main messages too.

So, although your course is predominantly focused on fire fighters and very high hour pilots, I would like to say that it has been 100% beneficial to me with only 1500hours. In fact, when I first did the course I only had 600 hours and it had a huge impact on me then, as it was the early stages of me embarking on AWK. You don't get taught this with the CPL training, and yet it is so important.

You asked for feedback, and I would say that my personal request would be to ask for a bigger room, so we can spread out more to have the space to see the slides etc. Or maybe have the projector screen up higher if you stick to the smaller room format? Apart from that, I had a perfect and fully satisfying experience and will continue to recommend you with great vigor to our pilots.

My warmest regards to you both,

Debs (Sydney August 2012)

Hello Lynette,

Thank you and PG&E for inviting and sponsoring law enforcement crewmembers to attend this safety course concerning flight operations in the wire and obstruction environment. Since becoming a pilot in 1984, I have attended quite a few wire strike prevention classes, watched several videos on the subject, taught wire strike prevention classes, and even made a wire awareness video. Never have I attended such a well presented and informative class as this class by Bob Feerst. He is clearly the leading expert on the subject and also an excellent instructor. I appreciate the knowledge I acquired in this class and look forward to the possible opportunity to attend Part II or any refresher classes that might be offered. In my opinion, inviting aircrew members to these classes most certainly results in lives saved, equipment not destroyed, and lines not downed.

J.C (March 2012)

The training was great! Bob's knowledge in the utilities and aviation field is truly incredible and his presentation is absolutely top notch. I don't think the folks from the power company were expecting to get that much out of the presentation and were pleasantly surprised. They are even talking about bringing Bob back! We invited our POI from the FAA and he expressed to Bob that his CRM presentation was the best he's ever heard.

Rob (HeloAir) Jan 2012

Dear Bob,

I have just attended your seminar in Nanaimo. My good friend had gone through your course in Hong Kong as a pilot with Heliservices and based on what he had told me I was very much looking forward to it.

I am an eleven year rotary spray pilot who has worked in the wire environment extensively. The use of Heinrich's Triangle and 'near misses' shed new light on my career as a pilot. As you can imagine, my few near misses had grown exponentially by the end of the course. Even though I am predominantly alone in the helicopter, the use of CRM when I do have passengers whether it be hydro related or not will become indispensable. I remember more than one occasion when a passenger has communicated their concern regarding the weather (amber alert), while I was solely focused on completing the task at hand.

What you bring to the industry through your experience, knowledge and teaching is invaluable. Thank you for your perseverance in wanting to make a proactive change in this industry that seems to be so complacent at times.

All the best,


Hi Bob,

How you doing? Just wanted to let you know that I found the "flying in the wire and obstruction environment course", really interesting and I have changed the way I fly. I have noticed plenty of Code Reds and take action when I notice them. Just yesterday, I was hovering next to a structure when the observer informed me that the batteries went dead in his gyro-stabilizing binoculars. Before I would have just held the hover next to the structure, but I broke off and went into a holding pattern by a near by field until the problem was fixed. All the best, will probably do the course again in a couple of years.

--DAVE McColl – 3/15/2011

Dear Bob,

Thank you very much for giving the course on "Flying in the Wire Environment" last Friday. Those of us from the Hong Kong Aviation Club who attended at the invitation of HeliServices found it most informative and stimulating.

-- John. 11/22/2010

The feedback from the course was very positive. It has now put all our linesman/cameramen and pilots on the same page. I have been flying all this week and I have noticed a big difference in the crew dynamics on the patrol.


-- Dave

Received 11/06/2010


Thanks again for your two day presentation at Idaho Power. Like I told you, I have been flying Idaho Power in and around Hell's Canyon for about the last 12 years. I thought I knew it all when it comes to power line patrol but your class was very informative with a lot of eye opening information that is imperative for any patrol pilot. I would recommended this course to anybody who is going to do this kind of work. The utility companies should make this a mandatory class for flight crews.

Thanks again,

Jay Ferguson

Received 8/18/2010

Hi Bob,

I attended your, flying in the wire environment, course here in New Zealand a couple of weeks ago and I must say I learnt a huge amount, not just about the wire environment but about all the various aspects of CRM you spoke about as well. Very informative, Thank you.

-Jon Keller

Received 8/16/2010

Fantastic course

We particularly liked the course content which covered aspects of crew resource management.



Received 8/2/2010

I attended your seminar in Palmerston North last Wednesday August on the wire and obstruction environment. I am fairly new to the aviation industry (just over 300 hrs in helicopters) and I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for taking the time to come and chat to us. I found the day extremely beneficial and it has taught me a lot of good lessons.

I have attended many talks/lectures in the past, and indeed have taken a few myself. I know how hard it is to keep the audiences attention for 20 mins let alone a whole day. I have to say there was not one point in the day where I felt myself not concentrating. I was fixed for the whole lecture, that says to me that everything you said was enlightening, interesting and extremely critical to flying.

I especially found the crew resource management section particularly of interest. Having spent 4 years as an Infantry Officer in the British Army, I always found good communication is essential in maintaining complete effectiveness and efficiency in everything that we do. The biggest thing I learnt from your lesson was this: I always assumed that my "situational awareness" was pretty good, however you made me realise that in the air you can never have enough. In future I will strive to ensure 100% concentration. Little things like fiddling with cameras, feeling crook all can pay a big factor to adverting attention from flying the aircraft. I fly mainly scenic flights and sometimes have to catch myself on as it is easy to get caught up in the commentary and not paying attention.

Thank you for pointing these pertinent points out to me. I hope you enjoy the rest of your time in New Zealand and I look forward to attending Part 2 when you return later in the year.

Kind Regards,

Paul Beckett

Helistar Helicopters

Received 2/27/2010
Houston, TX

I cannot believe that I have flown helicopters for 25 years without this course. The single most important safety training course that I have done. Every helicopter pilot should take it.

Received 2/27/2010
Houston, TX

Bob continues to improve an already outstanding course. Updated information, very knowledgeable of all the subject matter.

Received 2/27/2010
Houston, TX

Fantastic ! Very well presented, extremely pertinent and timely. Sequence of information right on for maximum impact. Great course – look forward to the next one.

Received 2/27/2010
Houston, TX

Bob, even after having the opportunity to preview Part II, it was a great and informative treat to see the entire presentation from start to end. I like the way you made everyone feel necessary.
Helen Jones -

Received 9/28/2009
Brisbane, Australia

Have just returned home from brisbane after going to Bob's Flying the Wire and Obstruction Environment Training. I did have a bit of a "i hope this doesn't take all day attitude" before i walked in much to my lack of knowledge about the subject. I have been pretty simple minded about wires, "there's a wire don't hit it ......"
From the moment Bob introduced himself at 9.00am he set about , in a true AL GORE style with the most thorough entertaining educational conference, not to mention excellent food untill 4.30pm." Thank you for providing such an informative course.

Received 9/24/2009
Brisbane, Australia

I found the course excellent and well presented - Bob is an excellent personality and capable expert in the field. It was a pleasure to host the events and certainly should be considered into the future, especially if it were possible to undergo the advanced training package.

I solicited general feedback from a cross section of the attendees and all agreed that it was a worthwhile course for both pilots and crew. Many were extremely complimentary of the method of course presentation. One of our military helicopter pilots (Chinook) was excited that this was the standard of material being provided to civilian audiences - she indicated that this was an essential part of her military training.

I have personally learned a number of lessons for my own flying style and I have found myself applying the lessons that Bob has so enthusiastically presented. A fair percentage of the material is committed to my memory which, to my reckoning, indicates it has been well presented.

I would like to extend our thanks to yourself, Bob and his wife for making the effort to get into regional Queensland. I believe that this course presents a unique and necessary element in low level operations and I would be happy to advocate it.

Received 9/23/2009
Sydney, Australia

Thank you for organizing such a fantastic day for us all at Bankstown. The Wire Strike Course was interesting from start to finish, and Bob had us engaged the entire time. He is a master! Please thank him from all of us at________.

Received 9/14/2009
Sydney, Australia

Thanks for great CRM & Wire Environment training session at the Rydges, Bass Hill last week. This was undoubtedly one of the best safety type training courses I have ever attended.

Can I reinforce some positive points about the training?

  • Very high quality presentation
  • Very relevant material
  • Presenter was a ‘true’ expert in the subject matter – this is often overlooked
  • Audiovisual aids extremely good & useful
  • Presentation underpinned by extensive research & incident investigations – invaluable
  • Length of course was appropriate – training is often too long these days
Thanks again Bob & Lynette for a great course.

Received 7/29/2009
Blenheim, New Zealand

Hi Bob,
I had the pleasure of attending your seminar in Blenheim earlier this week.

As you are probably aware we are heavily involved in the Power line industry and having attended this seminar, thought it may be a good idea to look at the possibility of running the course specific to the power line industry for some of our customers and their crews.

Could you let me know availability and cost involved in running a course such as this and any other specifics that may be involved?

Kind regards,

Received 7/9/2009
Minneapolis Minnesota, USA

Hi Patricia

I heard positive feedback from all
I do not have any specifics however, just positive comments

Received 6/18/2009
Vernon BC, Canada

We all enjoyed the presentation, very well done and very educational. In spite of the imposed time constraints, I would have sat for a few more hours to get the full presentation.


Received 6/14/2009
Nanimo BC, Canada

Thank you very much for a very essential course. I was one of the pilots and found the content very useful. Please allow me to mention some points.

As a pilot, whom just recently had an accident with a good outcome, I cannot overemphasize how real these dangers are. I therefore found it very disruptive of some course attendees in the way they behaved during the presentation. I can only assume that these members place their lives and ALL the risks of this environment on 1 pair of shoulders. I hope they have placed their funeral song requests. With that attitude, it is absolutely a matter of " when " not " if ". It is respectful to live to view this course with the necessary seriousness.

I hope the future does not make it a privilege but a necessity to attend your course.

Received 6/10/2009
Vancouver BC, Canada

Hi Robert,
I just had a few friends go though your course in Vancouver BC and they thought it was really excellent. I was wondering if we could set something up to start running our guys though. Look forward to hearing from you.

Received 6/4/2009
Smithers BC, Canada

I just took the Utility Flight Operations Course Part 1 from Bob and want to pass on my compliments for an excellent course content and presentation. I've had many training sessions from a number of people and must say that this one is the best I've seen yet. Bob kept the whole group interested with his excellent pictures and diagrams and I felt it was well worth my time and really enjoyed the course...keep up the good work!

Received 4/23/2009
Portland OR, USA

Hi Patricia,
The class was great as usual. Your team always does a superior job.

Received 2/2/09
Nelson BC, Canada

This seminar had so much to offer and has changed the way I fly.
I can't thank you enough.

Received 1/23/09
Vancouver BC, Canada

Mr. Feerst

I would like to thank you for your course we attended in Vernon with ________. It has provided some valuable information I know my partner and I will be looking forward to putting into practice in the near future. There was tremendous content of which I mentioned while briefly talking with you would have incredible impact with the Heli-ski industry.
Again thank you for your time during your program.