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Hawkeye IMC Up, Running, Flying at Point Mugu

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS050225-11
Release Date: 2/25/2005 4:09:00 PM

By Bill Bartkus, Naval Air Systems Command Depot North Island Public Affairs

POINT MUGU, Calif. (NNS) -- The much-anticipated Integrated Maintenance Concept at Point Mugu, Calif., became a reality Jan. 19 with the first induction of the E-2C Hawkeye.

The concept integrates the fleet and Depot maintainers to support the warfighter by working together on the E-2C.

"This ideal philosophy is conducted in fleet spaces as an overall cost-wise readiness venture," said Davy Chavarria with the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) Depot North Island Industrial Business Operations Department, who had the lead in organizing the plan.

Cmdr. Ron Kaelber, maintenance officer for Commander Airborne Early Warning Wing, Pacific, agreed with Chavarria's assessment.

"Cost will become an important factor in maintaining our aircraft to meet the increased tempo of the Fleet Response training plan," Kaelber said. "Some of the gains to be realized from accomplishing the PMI (Planned Maintenance Interval) work in an integrated environment include fielding questions, conducting show-and-tell, and reinforcing proper mechanical practices," Kaelber said. "Enhanced ability to recognize structural anomalies, reduced turnaround time on planner and estimator work, importance of using proper hardware and a greater appreciation of work performed at the Depot level are also pluses."

Gregory Champagne, the Depot's on-site production supervisor, said the artisans enjoy working at Point Mugu.

"They know that what they are doing saves the Navy and the taxpayer money and shortens the turnaround time," he said. "PMI also gives Sailors valuable training that they wouldn't normally receive. This is a win-win situation for the Depot and the fleet."

"I feel that integrating the O-level and D-level effort at Point Mugu will pay dividends for years to come," added Kaelber. "Sailors are excited about being able to work side-by-side with Depot artisans. Being able to acquire specific knowledge, skills and abilities in their trade while working on their aircraft will increase their value to the squadron and help us to maintain the fleet for years to come."

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