Turning Iron Faster in Oklahoma City

The workforce at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center, one of the Air Force’s three heavy maintenance depots, has made great strides in the last several years, said Maj. Gen. David Gillett, the center’s commander. “When I got here two and a half years ago, we were a little bit off track,” Gillett told the Daily Report during a recent interview in his office at Tinker AFB, Okla. Many airframes were spending too much time in “flow days” at the facility—and not getting back out to their squadrons quickly enough, he said. In response, center personnel implemented measures to increase the speed of individual depot tasks, reduce the overall cycle time of airframes, and improve quality, he said. Notable progress has been achieved. In Fiscal 2011, for example, every one of the center’s programmed depot maintenance lines delivered more aircraft than officials had anticipated. The KC-135 line, the Air Force’s largest PDM line, reduced the flow days for each aircraft from 226 in Fiscal 2009 to 159 last fiscal year, he said. The line was on track to complete work on 64 KC-135s in Fiscal 2011, up nine from the previous year, he said during the late September interview. The KC-135 line’s achievements have garnered Defense Department recognition.