New, focused maintenance team

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Malcolm Mayfield
  • 90th Missile Wing Public Affairs
F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. -- In the wake of the Force Improvement Program, many changes to operations in F.E. Warren Air Force Base's missile complex have been made to improve the quality of life and efficiency in the field.

One such improvement was the formation of a new team to streamline the maintenance done on launch control centers and launch facilities throughout the 9,600 mile missile field.

The Survivability Systems Team consists of former mechanical and pneudraulics section personnel and takes over all maintenance in the complex that was originally done by MAPS, allowing them to focus on back shop jobs, and keeping the work load to a minimum. The creation of SST has allowed both teams to effectively and more efficiently execute the ICBM mission.

"Now we are more focused and proficient at the tasks we've been dealt," said Tech. Sgt. Howard Smith, 90th Missile Maintenance SST non-commissioned officer in charge. "Our primary focus is emergency response equipment and launch facility and launch control center survivable systems."

The new teams enhance the 90th MMXS's capabilities by allowing the team to hone their skills on the high priority jobs.

"We currently have 100 percent of all LCC blast doors operational," said Staff Sgt. Jon Huff, 90th MMXS SST team chief and instructor. "We can work on tasks in the field more rapidly because we have less of a back shop responsibility."

Smith said the team has been able to stay ahead of schedule with their in-house inspections.

"Being small has helped this shop tremendously," said Senior Airman Anthony Eschete, 90th MMXS SST team chief. "We can maximize our training and efficiency because it's so much more focused."

Eschete said being on this new team has allowed him more opportunities to explore the missile complex and create bonds with his colleagues in the tightknit group.

The team's camaraderie and motivation may have played a part in their current trend of work ethic.

The team's first dispatch was on Oct. 8, and since then, they have cleared more than 185 work orders visiting 12 LCCs, many of them multiple times over, Smith said.

"I'm really glad this unit was formed and I'm excited to see how much further we can improve," Huff said.

The team has shown steady improvement and increased in morale, making it a great example of another FIP initiative leading the Air Force and the nuclear enterprise in the right direction.