HomeNewsArticle Display

173rd ARS Aircrew Members Improve Readiness with ATSO Training

Airmen assigned to the 155th Operation Support Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment guide Captain Chris Castle, 173rd Air Refueling Squadron KC-135 Stratotanker pilot, through an aircrew contamination control area March 9, 2019, at the 155 Air Refueling Wing, Nebraska National Guard air base, Lincoln, Nebraska. The ACCA provides aircrew members and AFE Airmen with the readiness they need for real-world situations.

Airmen assigned to the 155th Operation Support Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment guide Captain Chris Castle, 173rd Air Refueling Squadron KC-135 Stratotanker pilot, through an aircrew contamination control area March 9, 2019, at the 155 Air Refueling Wing, Nebraska National Guard air base, Lincoln, Nebraska. The ACCA provides aircrew members and AFE Airmen with the readiness they need for real-world situations. (U.S Air Force photo taken by Staff Sgt. Jason Wilson / Release)

March 9, 2019 --

The Air Force created ATSO training to combat the uncertainty of the changing global climate in which a high level of importance is placed on the ability to respond to external threats in an effective manner. ATSO training focuses on improving Airmen’s ability to perform their duties during circumstances that are less than perfect and improving the unit’s ability to respond to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats.

“This is an opportunity to practice using and wearing the Aircrew Chemical Defense Ensemble,” said Maj. Tyler Sanberg, 173rd Air Refueling Squadron KC-135 Stratotanker pilot. “It allowed us to see how we would proceed to the aircraft, pre-flight the plane and potentially launch the aircraft all while wearing the chemical gear.”

The added gear of the ACDE brought challenges to task and routines that under normal circumstances would operate smoothly.

“Communication was difficult before I was able to plug into the aircraft,” said Sanberg. “Once I was able hear, the challenges were visual and mobility restrictions.”

During the training event some members of the 155th Air Refueling Wing were tasked to observe and assess the practical application of the training and to emphasize the importance of the ability to survive and operate.

“I am here to inspect and to identify problems,” said Master Sgt. Mathew Ellison, 173rd Air Refueling Squadron Wing Inspection Team member. “I am not looking for what people are doing wrong. I am looking for problems and working with others on base to fix those problems.”

The crewmembers involved in the training spoke positively about the impact and effectiveness of the ATSO.  Training events such as ATSO not only increases the skill level of Airmen and add career development, but also build squadron unity.

“It was a fun opportunity to practice the procedures and accomplish the pre-flight,” Sandberg said. “Opportunities like these refresh the procedural knowledge and are great for building confidence in knowing you can accomplish the mission in a real-world situation.”

USAF Comments Policy
If you wish to comment, use the text box below. AF reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.

This is a moderated forum. That means all comments will be reviewed before posting. In addition, we expect that participants will treat each other, as well as our agency and our employees, with respect. We will not post comments that contain abusive or vulgar language, spam, hate speech, personal attacks, violate EEO policy, are offensive to other or similar content. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly "off topic", promote services or products, infringe copyright protected material, or contain any links that don't contribute to the discussion. Comments that make unsupported accusations will also not be posted. The AF and the AF alone will make a determination as to which comments will be posted. Any references to commercial entities, products, services, or other non-governmental organizations or individuals that remain on the site are provided solely for the information of individuals using this page. These references are not intended to reflect the opinion of the AF, DoD, the United States, or its officers or employees concerning the significance, priority, or importance to be given the referenced entity, product, service, or organization. Such references are not an official or personal endorsement of any product, person, or service, and may not be quoted or reproduced for the purpose of stating or implying AF endorsement or approval of any product, person, or service.

Any comments that report criminal activity including: suicidal behaviour or sexual assault will be reported to appropriate authorities including OSI. This forum is not:

  • This forum is not to be used to report criminal activity. If you have information for law enforcement, please contact OSI or your local police agency.
  • Do not submit unsolicited proposals, or other business ideas or inquiries to this forum. This site is not to be used for contracting or commercial business.
  • This forum may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand, informal or formal complaint, or any other form of legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal and/or administrative remedy.

AF does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this forum is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. AF may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person. AF does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those websites that may be reached through links on our website.

Members of the media are asked to send questions to the public affairs through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Reporter questions will not be posted. We recognize that the Web is a 24/7 medium, and your comments are welcome at any time. However, given the need to manage federal resources, moderating and posting of comments will occur during regular business hours Monday through Friday. Comments submitted after hours or on weekends will be read and posted as early as possible; in most cases, this means the next business day.

For the benefit of robust discussion, we ask that comments remain "on-topic." This means that comments will be posted only as it relates to the topic that is being discussed within the blog post. The views expressed on the site by non-federal commentators do not necessarily reflect the official views of the AF or the Federal Government.

To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information, such as name, Social Security number, DoD ID number, OSI Case number, phone numbers or email addresses in the body of your comment. If you do voluntarily include personally identifiable information in your comment, such as your name, that comment may or may not be posted on the page. If your comment is posted, your name will not be redacted or removed. In no circumstances will comments be posted that contain Social Security numbers, DoD ID numbers, OSI case numbers, addresses, email address or phone numbers. The default for the posting of comments is "anonymous", but if you opt not to, any information, including your login name, may be displayed on our site.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comment policy. We encourage your participation in our discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.