Military Airlift: Changes Underway to Ensure Continued Success of Civil Reserve Air Fleet
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC NATIONAL SECURITY AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS DIV
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This report responds to your request that we evaluate the Civil Reserve Air Fleet CRAF program. The CRAF program was designed to provide the Department of Defense DOD with access to commercial aircraft to augment military airlift during emergencies. CRAF aircraft performed a vital role in Operation Desert ShieldStorm by transporting nearly two-thirds of the soldiers and one-quarter of their associated airlifted cargo to the Middle East. Specifically, we reviewed 1 the lessons learned from the first-ever activation of CRAF from both the governments and commercial carriers perspectives and 2 the changes to the CRAF program being considered to reflect DODs force restructuring in response to a new world political climate. CRAF is an important, yet relatively inexpensive, component of the Air Forces airlift capability. If used fully, the CRAF program can provide over 30 percent of the Air Forces cargo airlift capability and over 90 percent of its passenger airlift capability. Because of the program, the government does not incur the large costs of acquiring and supporting a large fleet of Air Force aircraft during peacetime. DOD pays for the airlift as it is used and at predetermined compensation rates.
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics