Dropping In

A team of airmen from the 374th Airlift Wing at Yokota AB, Japan, demonstrated airdrop methods and capabilities to members of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force during a recent exchange of knowledge. Specifically, the airmen shared low-cost, low-altitude methods, which provide efficient, reliable, safe, and accurate airdrops for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations, states a Dec. 2 base release. This kind of capability is essential in disaster-stricken areas that lack airstrips or safe landing zones, said Lt. Col. Andrew Campbell, deputy commander of the 36th Airlift Squadron. “For $15 a rig, you can provide 600 pounds of medical or other supplies to people in need,” he noted. Typically, “you have to have a fixed wing aircraft to deliver loads that size,” he said. The team explained suspended weight, package strength, parachute packing procedures, and weight rations. This goal is to help JASDF “can get their own program up and running and possibly join us on missions,” said TSgt. Miguel Vasquez of the 374th Logistical Readiness Squadron. Some members of JASDF also will participate in Operation Christmas Drop, a humanitarian relief effort that airdrops supplies over the Micronesian Islands every December.