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Airmen and cargo on the move.

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Ray Lloyd
  • 107th Airlift Wing
The 107th and 914th Airlift Wing's had their Position the Force Exercise at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station Jan. 21 and 22. The exercise involved movement of personnel and cargo of about 500 Airmen and over 100,000 lbs of cargo onto C-130 aircraft in a 12 hour period. The majority of this work is done by the air transportation specialist or, as they like to be called, "Aerial Port Cargo."

"I'm new to this career and this operation is going very smooth," said Senior Airman Joshua Strange, 107th Air Transportation Specialist.

Their job includes processing personnel and cargo, rigging for airdrop, packing parachutes, loading equipment, preparing air cargo and load plans, loading and securing aircraft, ejecting cargo for in-flight delivery, and supervising units engaged in aircraft loading and unloading operations.

One of the most important functions performed by aerial porters is the joint inspection of hazardous cargo and equipment. When any customer requires the movement of these types of shipments certain requirements must be met under U.S. Department of Defense regulations. Joint inspectors ensure that all of these requirements are met and that the shipment is safe for flight.

This exercise is just one phase of many before both units have their operational readiness inspection (ORI) this summer. Also, this ORI is history in the making being the first time both associated wing's are on the same team and graded as one "Team Niagara." This is a required task that all Air Force units must do every four to six years to keep their wartime skills up to date.