News | Feb. 12, 2017

Mass training prepares tankers for expedited takeoff

By Senior Airman Tara R. Abrahams 940th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

The 940th Maintenance and Operations Groups participated in training with four KC-135 Stratotankers Feb. 10, 2017, at Beale Air Force Base, California.


This was the first mass practice since the return of the refueling mission last year and served as preparation for upcoming exercises and inspections.


“We have to practice to be ready,” said Chief Master Sgt. Daniel McCarthy, 940th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron flight chief. “There are so many moving parts.”


Airmen were challenged to prepare all four aircraft for takeoffs as fast as possible. Each was refueled, inspected and prepared for departure, using less than half the time they would have on a routine mission.


For everything to fall into place properly, coordination is key.


“Everything is orchestrated,” said Lt. Col. Paula Ross, 940 AMXS commander. “They have to stick to the schedule.”


Although maintenance and operations Airmen were the primary participants, aircrew, aircrew flight equipment and security forces were also involved. Support from services and supply were simulated as well.


“There are a lot of supporting roles outside of maintenance,” McCarthy said. “Everybody in the wing has a part to make our missions happen.”