Saturday, February 18, 2012

Boeing Macon work on A-10 wings apparently will survive 2013 cuts

By Gene Rector
The Warner Robins Patriot
16 hrs ago

Apparently work on new A-10 wings at Boeing Macon will continue despite programmed cuts to the Thunderbolt fleet contained in the president's fiscal year 2013 budget proposal to Congress.

Asked about the program earlier this month, Air Force Chief of Staff Norton Schwartz reportedly said, "We're reducing 102 A-10s, but there's still going to be 246 A-10s left in the inventory."

That take was underscored Thursday as Air Force and Boeing officials rolled out the first re-winged A-10 in ceremonies at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. Boeing is under contract to produce 233 new wing sets at Boeing Macon. The wings are supplied to the Ogden Air Logistics Center at Hill AFB where they are installed on the aircraft.

The thicker, enhanced wing will replace thinner-skinned wings on the close air support workhorse that have been prone to cracks.

Boeing Macon officials did not respond Friday to a request for comment. However, Mark Bass, Boeing Defense, Space and Security's maintenance, modifications and upgrades vice president, said Thursday the company "remains a committed partner in ensuring the A-10 continues to be a ready, reliable and viable weapon system." The comments were contained in a Boeing news release issued after the roll-out ceremony.

The Air Force proposes to stand down five A-10 squadrons, including three Guard, one Reserve and one active units.


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