Safety office gets good grades on ACC report card

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Samuel King Jr.
  • 53d Wing Public Affairs

"Open up and say ahhhh."

The 53d Wing safety office is 'fit for duty' after receiving an excellent overall rating during an Air Combat Command 'check up' here March 10-14.

The 'check up' was a Program Management Evaluation, an overall safety inspection of the wing and its units. The PME program occurs every three years and is similar to a Unit Compliance Inspection. It focuses on three areas: ground, weapons and flight safety.

"I think the inspectors liked what they saw," said Lt. Col. Michael Neeman, 53d Wing Safety chief. "We made sure we were well prepared and ensured the GSUs (geographically separated units) were ready as well."

In addition to the wing's safety processes and programs, ACC explored the communication and relationship challenges between the 53d safety office, wing squadrons and various host base safety units.

"This wing is unique due to having units in so many locations," said the colonel who'd only taken command a month before the inspection. "We have to coordinate with many different safety (representatives) and offices to guarantee efficiency and ensure we're not duplicating our efforts."

As part of the evaluation and to understand the wing's GSU coordination, ACC inspected the Weapons Evaluation Group at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.

"They looked at our plans and processes to see we're ensuring safety proactively in our missions, some of which are high risk," said Maj. Michael Leach, 53d WEG safety officer.

All of the areas received positive ratings, especially ground safety.

"Ground safety takes a very active role in the wing," said the colonel. "The ACC team was very impressed with the Commander's Safety Cup Challenge and our creation and base integration of the motorcycle safety day at Eglin."

Based on ACC feedback, the 53d safety office will continue to increase coordination and host-base relationships especially between different commands.

"Coordination is an important key," said the colonel. "If there's a situation, we have to know who is responsible for what."

Now after experiencing the 'inspectee' process, the safety office will put its inspector hat back on and head out to 'check up' on the 49th Test and Evaluation Squadron at Barksdale AFB, La. They are also gearing up their 'outstanding' ground safety programs as the summer approaches.

"We are finalizing the rules for the Safety Cup to begin in May and our next motorcycle safety day is April 29," said the colonel.