Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

Posts made in: September, 2016 (12) Currently Viewing: 11 - 12 of 12

September 29, 2016 at 12:25pm

Expeditionary exercise trains Security Forces

Two members from the 446th Security Forces Squadron arrive for the expeditionary exercise from a U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter. Photo credit: Staff Sgt. Daniel Liddicoet

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD - As part of a large-scale Field Training Exercise put together by the 446th Security Forces Squadron, more than 50 members from Joint Base Lewis-McChord conducted a large-scale Field Training Exercise Sept. 8-11.

Held over the September Unit Training Assembly, the exercise included U.S. Army aviation assets as well as medical personnel.

Planners designed the exercise to challenge Security Forces operators to perform expeditionary skills including urban operations, base defense operations, entry control point operations, and key leader engagements.

In a video interview, Capt. Ryan Bradley, 446th SFS commander, explained, "we did the exercise to highlight what we do in an expeditionary environment so we can recognize our strengths and learn what we need to improve upon in the future."

The exercise also demonstrated how reservists maximize their training time to accomplish critical deployment training tasks.

"During the UTAs, we're always crunched on time," said Tech. Sgt. Peter Ahn, 446th SFS NCO. "For us to come out here and do hands-on training, it just shows what we're capable of doing and how we maximize our time."

From rifleman to being squad member, we all have our different roles we need to practice, and this exercise gave us the opportunity to do that, said Bradley.

The training included scenarios that the citizen airmen might encounter while deployed.

Learning how to identify Improvised Explosive Devices and patrolling in convoys in and around makeshift training villages were important elements of the training.

The citizen airmen even participated in an impromptu ambush exercise utilizing laser technology to test their ability to work as a team and overcome opposition forces.

September 29, 2016 at 12:31pm

62nd AMXS win USTRANSCOM Innovation Award

The 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron poses for a group photo Sept. 12 at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Photo credit: Senior Airman Divine Cox

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD - The 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Innovation Team was selected for the United States Transportation Command Commander's Innovation Showcase Award for the third quarter Sept. 16.

The Innovation Showcase award was established in 2012 to recognize USTRANSCOM teams that demonstrate innovation and collaboration with a focus on the commander's priorities while solving problems for the warfighter.

Every quarter, Gen. Darren McDew, USTRANSCOM commander, and the leadership team review award nominations from across the joint enterprise and select one overall winner and up to four honorable mentions. The team added the honorable mentions to the selection this year in order to recognize more USTRANSCOM personnel for their innovative work.

This was the second time the 62nd AMXS has put in a package for this award, but the first time they have won first place.

"The 62nd AMXS Innovation team won an honorable mention in the second quarter USTRANSCOM Innovation Challenge," said 2nd Lt. Sean Stephens, 62nd AMXS silver Aircraft Maintenance Unit assistant officer in charge. " This was a great achievement and excellent recognition for the squadron's airmen. We knew that the squadron had been doing so many great things with innovation, that we were definitely able to write another package for this third quarter award."

The 62nd AMXS Innovation Team earned top honors for its improved technician capability on the flight line with an improved high-capacity battery for their digital technical orders system.

Technicians can now work a whole shift without the need for recharging their DTOS, saving technicians approximately 30 minutes a day, which equates to an annual savings of 182.5 man hours.

A snap scanner was procured for the AMXS production office to expedite the generation of necessary documents. The snap scanner has reduced meeting preparation time by one hour per day and also reduced paper waste.

Also through the AIT, plastic chocks with nylon rope will replace the commonly used wooden chocks and cotton cloth rope that degrade quickly from daily use and the Washington rain. The wooden chocks were replaced every four months, but replacing them with the plastic chocks will reduce the replacement rate with a potential 10- year cost savings of $154,600.

Finally, the AIT worked with the 62nd AMXS metals tech back shop to design a new and improved storage bin specially designed for the C-17 Globemaster III floor grates used to access the underfloor of the aircraft.

The old storage location caused vital time to be taken away from the inventory process and took up significant storage space. Creating the new shelving design has cut down time for the daily inspections which also equates to an estimated 61 hours saved annually.

The team's innovation has saved more than 2,000 man-hours and $4,700. The team has forecasted estimates of an annual time savings of 5,400 man-hours and $24,000 cost avoidance.

Stephens said that this will not be the last time that the 62nd AMXS Innovation team submits a package for this award.

"I was thrilled when I received the email stating the 62nd AMXS won the USTRANSCOM Innovation Challenge award," said Maj. Mark Szatkowski, 62nd AMXS commander. "The AMXS Innovation program started from a simple white board and morphed into a website with nearly 250 ideas to date to improve the unit and JBLM.  It has given our personnel a voice on any shift, on any day to drive change as we continue to operate with less resources.  I am humbled to be part of such a great team of folks and grateful they won this award."

Next, the team will travel to Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, for a ceremony to receive this award from McDew.

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