Thursday, June 19, 2008

Aviation logistics; a key to flying success

Lance Cpl. Michael Stevens

AT-TAQADDUM, Iraq (June 14, 2008) – With detachments throughout the Anbar province, Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing (Forward), works diligently to keep aircraft in the air and in the fight.

One unit in particular, Detachment A, MALS-16, keeps the CH-46 Sea Knight, UH-1N Huey and AH-1W Super Cobra flying in support of the Coalition effort through maintenance and routine inspections aboard Camp Taqaddum.

“Our key mission is to provide an intermediate level of maintenance support to the Marine flying squadrons here,” said Gunnery Sgt. James E. Peeler, the Detachment A staff noncommissioned officer in charge. “When components break on the aircraft here, we’re the first ones to obtain the part and try and fix it.”

Along with providing maintenance on aircraft parts, the squadron possesses a number of ground support equipment used by squadrons throughout the flight line. This gear includes portable lights to allow illumination throughout the night and machinery for loading and unloading cargo from aircraft.

In addition to providing squadrons with equipment, the MALS-16 Marines use their capabilities to conduct in-depth aircraft inspections.

“We have the gear to visually inspect the high-stress areas of the aircraft,” said Sgt. Kenneth Hudson, a non-destructive inspector with Detachment A. “It allows us to see what the naked eye can’t reveal. We use a standard procedure so we can properly inspect the aircraft and its parts.”

These inspections take place after a pre-determined number of flight hours to ensure the safety of the pilots and crew.

The avionics Marines troubleshoot and repair the aircraft survivability equipment on each Marine Corps aircraft, as well as the Army UH-60 Black Hawk.

The 3rd MAW (Fwd) Marines fill an important role, reacting to all situations and ensuring the aircraft are able to continue supporting ground elements at a moments notice,” said 1st Lt. Alexis F. Vogelgesang, the Detachment A officer-in-charge.

“I’m proud of all the Marines under my charge,” said Vogelgesang. “We have augments from several units that team together to get the job done safely and in a timely manner. Our detachment’s cohesion is thriving and will continue to do so for the duration of our deployment.”

1 comment:

David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 06/19/2008 News and Personal dispatches from the front lines.