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News > FOD cautions increase after early arctic storm
FOD cautions increases as wind ravages JBER
Airman 1st Class Patrick Yohn, 3rd Operations Support Squadron, Airfield Management, performs a routine Foreign Object Debris check upon entering the flight line at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, Sept. 4, 2012. A FOD check is done to prevent any objects from possibly damaging incoming taxiing aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Ty-Rico Lea)
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FOD cautions increase after early arctic storm

Posted 9/14/2012   Updated 9/14/2012 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Ty-Rico Lea
JBER Public Affairs

9/14/2012 - JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARSON, Alaska -- Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson personnel have taken extra caution with ensuring the flight line is free of debris given last week's wind storm, which left moderate property damage base wide.

"Depending on how large or what the foreign object debris is can cause damage to engines, body of the aircraft or landing gear," said Tech. Sgt. Noelle Scala, 3rd Operations Support Squadron, airfield operations supervisor.

Frequent FOD checks are conducted not only due to the storm, but also due to carelessness by those operating on the flight line and not conducting checks properly.
Airfield management personnel highly suggest ensuring bench stock, bench-stock residue, shop stock, operating stock areas, and any other loose cargo are controlled to reduce the potential for hardware items causing FOD.

Each FOD checkpoint contains a stop sign, FOD container, a traffic light and a sign giving brief instructions on how to complete a routine check.

The proper way to perform a FOD check is to approach the checkpoint, come to a complete stop, and place your vehicle in park. Either the driver or a passenger in the vehicle must then exit and inspect all four of the vehicle's tires, making sure there are no rocks, pins or other foreign debris wedged in the tire. The driver must then move the vehicle forward enough to check beneath the tires. After completing these steps and ensuring there is no possibility of trailing any FOD, it is then safe to proceed onto the flight line.

The consequences of not properly performing a FOD check can result in possible disciplinary action. A first offense garners a verbal warning. Numerous offenses can and will result in an airfield driver's license revocation.

"Airfield Management Operations enforce the FOD check rules and regulations, but any airfield driver may correct an individual if they see another driver not conducting a proper FOD check." Scala said.

Flight line personnel have found tools, large rocks, rubber, trash, metal fragments and pieces of aircraft while conducting FOD checks.

Air Force Instruction 21-101 14.19, Foreign Object Damage FOD Prevention Program, states "All personnel (military, civilian and contractors) working in, on, around or traveling through areas near aircraft, munitions, airfield ground equipment, engines or components thereof will comply with FOD prevention."

"People accessing the Joint Mobility Complex road should be more cautious when doing FOD checks, because they are driving their personal vehicles across a taxiway after driving on public roads covered with FOD, and these vehicles have a greater potential of leaving FOD on the active taxiway they have to cross and possibly causing damage to an aircraft," Scala said.

For questions regarding thorough details on a FOD check procedure, contact the 3rd Operations Support Squadron Base Operations at 552-2107.

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