Fast Roping Issue With CV-22?

Lawmakers questioned special operations representatives testifying April 27 about news from at least one soldier that the new tilt-rotor aircraft has such a strong downwash that at least three people on the ground must secure a rappelling rope. Garry Reid, deputy assistant secretary of defense for special operations and combating terrorism, acknowledged that he had heard of the issue when utilizing a fast-roping procedure, but he explained that fast roping “wasn’t a cornerstone of the fielding of the [V-]22.” He said, “I’m sure if we decide we need to continue fast roping out of CV-22s, we’ll figure out, much like we figured out how to do things out of [H-]53s and [H-]47s, … a way around this.” Rep. Loretta Sanchez, who chairs the House Armed Services terrorism and unconventional threats and capabilities panel, promised to track the issue “to see if it is a problem.” (Also see Reid written testimony; Sanchez opening remarks)