Sunday - September 24, 2017
AFB To Get New Tankers
Written by Rick Martinez   
Wednesday, 13 September 2017 16:31

GOLDSBORO -- The Air Force locked in plans to base KC-46A aircraft at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

The decision will send an eventual 12 new tankers to Seymour Johnson, allowing the 916th Air Refueling Wing to modernize its current fleet of KC-135R aircraft.

“These 12 new KC-46A aircraft will serve as a vital tool for our military, providing any fixed-wing aircraft with mid-air refueling capabilities a prolonged amount of time in the air for use in either logistical or combat operations, said North Carolina Richard Burr. "For years, I have worked with Senator Tillis, our Senate colleagues, committees of jurisdiction, and the citizens of Goldsboro to advocate for the necessary funding required for the maintenance and operation of the KC-46As. This final decision could not be more timely, as the capable Airmen of Seymour Johnson are celebrating the 75th anniversary of the 4th Fighter wing this September. I appreciate all of the hard work by Secretary Wilson and the citizens of Goldsboro, and I am honored to have the opportunity to continue to advocate on behalf of all of our nation’s military assets in North Carolina.”

While the Air Force originally planned to begin basing the new tankers -- highly modified Boeing-767 aircraft -- in North Carolina as soon as 2019, aircraft delivery is now subject to when KC-46A prime contractor Boeing delivers the new aircraft. The KC-46A program has experienced numerous delays during development.

Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) applauded the Air Force decision in a statement: "The addition of 12 KC-46A tanker aircraft at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base is a testament that North Carolina continues to be the tip of the spear for the U.S. military."

The Air Force previously announced plans to base KC-46A aircraft at Altus Air Force Base, OK, McConnell Air Force Base, KS, and Pease Air National Guard Station, NH. In January, the service selected Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst, NJ, and Travis Air Force Base, CA, as preferred locations for the next two active-duty-led KC-46A operating bases.

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 September 2017 16:32
 
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