MacDill Confirms Tanker Test

USAF maintainers who tackle the lengthy periodic inspections on KC-135 tankers may save up to 147 hours per aircraft using a new standardized inspection process that has been declared ready for export to any tanker base, following a trial at MacDill AFB, Fla. Airmen from 14 tanker bases gathered at MacDill last month to prove out a No. 2 periodic inspection process first developed during an Air Force Smart Operations 21 rapid improvement event last year at Grand Forks AFB, N.D. The MacDill group worked for three weeks, making adjustments as they observed the new process in action. According to 1st Lt. Karen Legal, 6th Maintenance Squadron Maintenance Flight commander at MacDill, the new workflow will shave 48 man-hours from each inspection, and, following additional recommendations could up that to 147 hours. After another validation, this one by the Air National Guard in June, the Air Force plans to create a standardized electronic work package for use by all tanker units. (MacDill report by Nick Stubb)