Koodak Alaska Based U. S. Air Guard : Flight Crewss : Program Analysis

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1. Kodiak Alaska based U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) flight crews work in a 4,000,000-square-mile area of responsibility (AOR) operating in some of the most challenging weather condition to protect lives. It is easy to see that these crews must have the best training and must maintain peak proficiency in order to safely execute required missions. Yet Kodiak flight crews are arguably the least proficient in the USCG. Most units in the lower 48 states have several operational Small Boat Stations within their AOR to conduct practice hoist evolutions. Air Station Kodiak has no nearby stations and only 1 training boat available 7 or 8 months a year. Ref. (a) requires that all Flight Mechanics (FM) complete 1 boat hoist within the previous 90 days to…show more content…
3. To address this issue the current USCG Air Operations Manual requires that all FM’s complete 1 “boat hoist” every 90 days to maintain qualification. This rule which is designed to maintain proficiency has an opposite effect in Kodiak. Handcuffed by this requirement and limited “boat” training opportunities Kodiak is forced to “load the bus” with multiple FM’s when a boat hoisting flight is available. This action limits each FM to 2 or 4 hoist each event vs the 10-15 he/she would get if they were on the flight alone. This point is confirmed by an ALMIS “Annual Hoists per FM” report (Encl: 1). Kodiak FM’s averaged 18.1 training hoists per year with a fleet average 36.1 hoists per FM per year.

4. One way to correct this issue would be a 3710.1 policy change that would allow both Rescues Swimmer (RS) and land hoists to count towards the 90-day hoist requirement. This change would give Kodiak more flexibility to complete proficiency training when a training boat is unavailable. Training events such dual RS and land hoisting are not currently scheduled offen as they do not count towards 3710.1 minimum requirements. Currently any FM that exceeds the 90-day hoist requirement is unqualified pending a decision by the CO. This decision requires the FM to route a memo through their chain of command in order to receive permission from the CO to continue flying and receive their required proficiency training. This process

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