93 and Counting

Maintainers with the Washington Air National Guard’s 141st Air Refueling Wing at Fairchild AFB, Wash., have worked brake system swap-outs on 93 KC-135 tankers, as part of Air Mobility Command’s No. 1 KC-135 modification initiative. The wing lost its own KC-135s under BRAC 2005 and now operates as an associate to the active duty 92nd ARW at Fairchild, but it also appropriated part of the service’s work on retrofitting the brake system on the elderly tanker fleet and added some maintainers as a result. Without installation of the new brake system, the aircraft risk stabilizer problems. The 141st ARW’s Control Column Actuated Brake modification team, which is one of three Air Guard units that is working the brake system modification program, has teamed with Boeing contractors, many of them retired or former active duty KC-135 mechanics, to complete the overhaul. According to Maj. Deirdre Catlin, CCAB project officer, “The level of competence and experience out there is incredible” and is making “significant improvements to the safety of the KC-135 fleet.” AMC expects to complete the brake system modifications later this year. (Fairchildreport by SrA. Joshua Chapman)