Air Force Safety Investigation Board Presidents: An Alternative Manning Source
AIR COMMAND AND STAFF COLL MAXWELL AFB AL
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This paper addresses problems inherent in the aircraft mishap investigation system currently utilized by the United States Air Force. Specifically, it focuses on the position of the Safety Investigation Board SIB president. Currently, the USAF is experiencing three major problems with this position impartiality, training, and operational effects. The current system lacks impartiality because it uses senior active duty officers who are simultaneously part of the Air Force system they are investigating. It suffers from poor training because these senior officers often have no time to devote to safety training. Finally, it causes undesirable operational effects because it requires these SIB presidents to forsake their daily responsibilities to conduct the investigation. This paper uses original research to propose an unconventional solution to these problems the use of retired senior officers. Essentially, this author proposes hiring recently retired 0-6 and 0-7 officers to serve as board presidents. The Air Force can accomplish this by either maintaining a pool of retired officers, or contracting it out to a private firm. The significance of this proposal is two-fold. First, it improves the efficient use of human resources in mishap investigations and second, it provides an independent and objective senior officer to lead these investigations. If implemented, this proposal will enhance the USAF safety system--saving lives and increasingly scarce resources.
- Military Aircraft Operations