DoD

September 6, 2013

Munitions storage vital to AMMO

Tags:
Senior Airman GRACE LEE
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Master Sgt. Howard Suggs, 56th Equipment Maintenance Squadron Munitions Storage NCO-in-charge, ties a special ammo knot securing the wooden crates in one of the munitions storage units Aug. 26 on Luke Air Force Base. Munitions storage is responsible for managing and storing 18 million pounds of munitions on base, which is worth approximately $50 million.

What makes the world’s greatest and most powerful Air Force is not just the manpower behind it but the firepower that backs it up.

Located in an isolated area at Luke Air Force Base is a group of Airmen who support the mission by providing and managing the ammunition on base in a section called munitions storage.

“We maintain the capability to store 18 million pounds of net explosive weight on base,” said Master Sgt. Howard Suggs, 56th Equipment Maintenance Squadron Munitions Storage NCO-in-charge. “The net worth of all the munitions we oversee is worth approximately $50 million. We have the largest munitions stockpile in all of the Air Education and Training Command bases.”

The day begins with building security and inventory checks. Storage Airmen are responsible for not only maintaining the storage units, but also making sure everything is accounted for, organized, in serviceable condition and labeled correctly.

“We are essentially the core of munitions,” said Tech. Sgt. Melissa Tennant, 56th EMS assistant munitions storage NCO-in-charge. “We keep the other shops going by providing them the components they need to build missiles, bombs and more. We also support security forces, explosive ordnance disposal, egress and the pilots on base.”

Munitions storage Airmen handle a variety of munitions including small-arms, chaffs, which are tubes used by pilots to deter enemies from striking their aircraft by creating a decoy cloud of metallic material, flares, GBU-12, GBU-38, both smart bombs, BDU-33s, BDU-50s and MK-82s, Tennant said.

Management of explosive components can also be dangerous if certain precautions aren’t taken.

“We always put safety first,” Tennant said. “The most hazardous element of our job would be when handling damaged or old items. We also need to be hyperaware of our surroundings because we deal with bombs that range from 500 to 2,000 pounds using heavy-rated forklifts.”

Munitions storage is only one of nine sections that keep the mission going.

The other sections of ammo include control accountability, trailer inspection, precision-guided munitions, conventional maintenance, line delivery, equipment maintenance, support and munitions inspection, Suggs said.

Although small, the 18-man team gets the job done.

“Ammo is important to the Air Force mission because we help in deterring our enemies from attacking us,” Suggs said. “It is essential that we maintain a stockpile of ammo so that we are prepared if we do go to war.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Pg-1-photo

Chief of staff visits Luke

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III and his wife, Betty, spent time meeting with Airmen and leadership Monday at Luke Air Force Base. Welsh highlighted Airman health, wellness and quality of life activities. He also...
 
 

Mentoring fosters dreams, strengthens us

A few days ago while reading an online commander’s call, I came across an article dated Dec. 31, 2014, stating President Obama proclaimed the month of January 2015 National Mentoring Month. Although this topic is thoroughly discussed in our Air Force today, I felt compelled to write on its importance all the same. In a...
 
 

Have you joined the Air Force yet?

I enlisted into the Air Force in February of 1997. However, I didn’t join the Air Force until March of 1999. No, I’m not talking about the Delayed Enlistment Program. There was no doubt that after high school I would attend college. However, not having applied for any scholarships and realizing that I didn’t have...
 

 
Courtesy photo

Prevention training goes face-to-face

Courtesy photo Maj. Jennifer Tomlinson, Air Education and Training Command Medical Readiness Division deputy chief, serves as facilitator during the AETC Medical Services and Training directorate annual Air Force Suicide Preven...
 
 
Senior Airman
JAMES HENSLEY

Thunderbolt looks to future

Senior AirmanJAMES HENSLEY Staff Sgt. Maddie Baker, 56th Dental Squadron acting commander secretary was an Air Force Honor Guard member prior to crossing over to the dental field. As the commander’s secretary, she plays a piv...
 
 

Tuskegee Airmen commemorated

The Archer-Ragsdale Arizona Chapter of Tuskegee Airman Inc. celebrated the 2nd Annual Tuskegee Airman Commemoration Day with a wreath ceremony Wednesday at the Tuskegee Airmen Memorial Air Park. The Tuskegee Airmen Commemoration Day is the result of legislation signed into law by former Arizona Governor Janice Brewer in 2013 and is the first such law...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin