Military News

Thursday, October 15, 2015

MXS gives lift to KC-135 Stratotanker



by Airman 1st Class Mackenzie Richardson
92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

10/14/2015 - FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. -- The 92nd Maintenance Squadron conducted a Crash, Damaged, Disabled Aircraft Recovery training lift here Oct. 9, ensuring the proficiency of Fairchild Airmen in recovery of an aircraft. The test was conducted on a KC-135 Stratotanker from Kadena Air Base, Japan.

The CDDAR proficiency training simulated a scenario in which a KC-135 Stratotanker made contact with the ground without the nose landing gear extended. Airmen created platforms using synthetic supportive materials in four separate locations under the aircraft. The platforms were of various heights, depending on the section of the aircraft they supported. After the platforms were constructed, the team then laid pallets and airbags on top of the platforms.

The airbags used were AMS 26 type aircraft lifting airbags. They support approximately 26 tons per bag. On each platform, there are three separate airbags, each with the potential of inflating a total of eight inches, creating an overall clearance of 24 inches per platform. During the training, the bags were filled within one inch of the aircraft, ensuring the operational aircraft was not affected.

"The CCDAR team can be called out in a moment's notice to any type of aircraft incident, and when they are called out they need to be able to lift an aircraft and be able to restore it, move it, fly it, or fix it," said Capt. Dan Hult, 92nd MXS maintenance flight commander. "[Training] increases our readiness for any particular situation that would involve an aircraft mishap. It gives us one more tool in the toolbox to operate as a full airfield. We not only support our own aircraft, but we also support the various aircraft of other services."

According to Master Sgt. Simon Fancher, 92nd Maintenance Squadron periodic inspection chief, the CDDAR team is the last to respond to recover an aircraft. They are responsible for recovering the aircraft as it sits, stabilizing the aircraft for movement and reducing the risk of any secondary damage. Maintenance Airmen prepare for CDDAR by attending training or the CDDAR classes conducted at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas and Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz.

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