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Northrop replaces JSTARS leadership

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posted on Mar, 3 2017 @ 08:05 PM
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In September 2016, the Air Force grounded almost a quarter of the E-8 fleet for safety inspections, after problems were found on multiple aircraft coming from the depot. The investigation found several quality escapes, and improperly secured bolts on aircraft that were returned to the Air Force. As a result the Air Force has added several additional inspections, and altered the incentive structure on the current sustainment contract.

The Air Force initially planned to retire 5 aircraft in 2011, resulting in Northrop reducing their Depot workforce, and hiring contractors. Then Congress overturned the retirement plan, and maintenance requirements increased as they were flown more. Due to the backlog, they went from having too many people doing quality control, to not enough. That allowed more things to be missed as aircraft were returned from the Depot.


Northrop Grumman changed leadership at its JSTARS sustainment facility after the US Air Force grounded almost a quarter of the E-8C fleet for inspection.

Last September, the USAF initiated an investigation for safety of flight issues on four of the 17 JSTARS delivered from depot maintenance at Northrop’s sustainment facility in Lake Charles, Georgia. Northrop has since assigned new executive leadership and implemented operational improvements at Lake Charles, according to a Northrop spokesman.

The USAF’s investigation found some quality escapes and safety issues related to bolts improperly installed on the aircraft, Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, commander of Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, told reporters 2 March at the annual Air Warfare Symposium. The air force found the bolts that needed to be corrected and Northrop retrained its workforce, she says

www.flightglobal.com...




posted on Mar, 3 2017 @ 08:10 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
In September 2016, the Air Force grounded almost a quarter of the E-8 fleet for safety inspections, after problems were found on multiple aircraft coming from the depot. The investigation found several quality escapes, and improperly secured bolts on aircraft that were returned to the Air Force. As a result the Air Force has added several additional inspections, and altered the incentive structure on the current sustainment contract.

The Air Force initially planned to retire 5 aircraft in 2011, resulting in Northrop reducing their Depot workforce, and hiring contractors. Then Congress overturned the retirement plan, and maintenance requirements increased as they were flown more. Due to the backlog, they went from having too many people doing quality control, to not enough. That allowed more things to be missed as aircraft were returned from the Depot.


Northrop Grumman changed leadership at its JSTARS sustainment facility after the US Air Force grounded almost a quarter of the E-8C fleet for inspection.

Last September, the USAF initiated an investigation for safety of flight issues on four of the 17 JSTARS delivered from depot maintenance at Northrop’s sustainment facility in Lake Charles, Georgia. Northrop has since assigned new executive leadership and implemented operational improvements at Lake Charles, according to a Northrop spokesman.

The USAF’s investigation found some quality escapes and safety issues related to bolts improperly installed on the aircraft, Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, commander of Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, told reporters 2 March at the annual Air Warfare Symposium. The air force found the bolts that needed to be corrected and Northrop retrained its workforce, she says

www.flightglobal.com...


Congress really needs to stop changing their mind every few years. :0



posted on Mar, 3 2017 @ 08:12 PM
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a reply to: Pyle

They also need to stop preventing the AF from going through with their plans on some of these replacements.



posted on Mar, 5 2017 @ 05:30 PM
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Id be looking at the depot mentality not the structure..If the guys and gals arent doing the work properly and not being double checked before signoff there is a serious problem at the base level..It is not hard to go down to the job after its done with a torch and tick off a job thats been completed..You cannot take shortcuts with any aircraft maintenance..Its all about training guys..
edit on 5-3-2017 by Blackfinger because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 5 2017 @ 06:02 PM
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a reply to: Blackfinger

The problem was that they were going by the Air Force plan to reduce the number of airframes in 2011. So they started reducing the Depot staffing accordingly. Then Congress came along and said "no, you aren't", and they had to increase staffing again somehow, but the QA staffing wasn't increased accordingly after they did.



posted on May, 12 2017 @ 04:48 PM
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It's the people working on these planes. I don't understand how some of them even get hired. Some have zero experience working on aircraft and they hire them for a government contract on spy planes. I'm talking from mechanics to inspectors some of these people are ignorant. They spend more time just walking around shooting the # with each other instead of actually focusing on the job.



posted on May, 12 2017 @ 04:52 PM
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a reply to: Paratactical032

One of the problems is that they went to a mostly civilian workforce for Depot work, and moved away from the military being the backbone of the workforce. They had to hire people to make up the difference, and that meant that they had to go for people that had little to no experience. And that led to an environment where people just didn't care, as long as they got a paycheck.

As a result, we have the debacle that is the current Depot.



posted on May, 12 2017 @ 05:03 PM
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Exactly what it is. When new people are hired on our end we tell them to pick one mechanic and watch what they do all day. And probably 85% the time they come back and say they didn't do a damn thing but walk around all day. a reply to: Zaphod58



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