Safe Site Challenge gets new gold, silver members

  • Published
  • By Wayne Crenshaw
  • 78th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
The 562nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron struck gold not once but twice last week in the Commander's Safe Site Challenge.

Meanwhile, a small group of Northrop Grumman employees who operate a Global Hawk spares warehouse was awarded silver. The group is the first contractor-only organization to receive Safe Site recognition.

In the 562nd, which works on the C-17, its LAIRCM unit and Weapons System Support Center earned gold. LAIRCM, which stands for Large Infrared Countermeasures, helps protect planes from missile attacks.

The approximately 40 maintainers in the LAIRCM unit usually work outdoors and high off the ground. In previous years, it was typical to have a couple dozen mishaps, including injuries and damage to property. Last year, however, the LAIRCM team had zero.
"It's just phenomenal when you take a look at the environment they work in," said Mike Doubleday, 562nd AMXS deputy director. "They are a dedicated team and they look after each other."

The Weapons System Support Center is an administrative area of about 40 people who provide worldwide C-17 weapons systems support.

The group of four Northrop Grumman employees who earned silver is contracted to the 560th Aircraft Support Group and operates a 16,500 square-foot warehouse. They are the first group of contractors to apply for Safe Site recognition.

Lee Roberts, the group's Voluntary Protection Program representative, said they decided to seek silver soon after they got involved with VPP.

"We are still learning the VPP stuff, but it's working out pretty good for us," he said.