Thursday, September 10, 2015

All Hands Meeting - September 2015

By 1st Lt Karin Hollerbach, photos by Lt Col Juan Tinnirello

This month’s All Hands Meeting was opened with Lt Col Tinnirello leading squadron members in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Members and Visitors Attending the All Hands Meeting

Several visitors and prospective new members joined our meeting, and we extend a warm welcome to them.

Monthly Recap

Once again, August proved to be a busy month for Squadron 188.

Air Force training mission
Two aircrew (including Capt Steven DeFord, Lt Hollerbach, and Capt Pete McCutcheon in CAP 481 and Capt Georgios Michelogiannakis, Capt Jordan Hayes, and Capt Terence Wilson in CAP 445), mission staff (including Maj Noel Luneau serving as IC, Maj Doug Ramsey and 1st Lt Gabriel Fletcher-Hernandez serving as MROs) participated in this training mission.

Groups 2 and 5 held an advanced SAREX at LVK, in which quite a few Squadron members participated.  Thanks to the following members for making themselves available for this training:

Lt Adams
  • Maj Chris Johnson, Incident Commander (IC)
  • Maj DeFord,  Blackhat team 
  • Maj Kathy Johnson, Public Information Officer (PIO)
  • Maj Luneau, Mission Observer (MO)
  • Capt Hayes, Logistics Section Chief (LSC)
  • 1st Lt Eric Choate, Mission Pilot (MP)
  • Lt Fletcher-Hernandez, Airborne Photographer (AP)
  • 1st Lt Al Chavez, Urban Direction Finder (UDF) team lead
  • Lt Hollerbach, Blackhat team
  • 2d Lt Robert Adams, Mission Radio Operator (MRO)
  • SM Nicolay Zherebnenkov 

Maj K. Johnson
According to the IC, Maj C. Johnson, the operational tempo was “daunting.”  The feedback he received from many was that “we need to do more stuff like this.” Resources were deliberately overwhelmed and stretched thin, to approximate real life scenarios. When actual large-scale disasters occur, or multiple smaller disasters happen in parallel, we can’t count on always having enough staffing.

As PIO for the SAREX, Maj K. Johnson did an amazing job of orchestrating press coverage, including both NBC and Channel 2.  We thank both stations for giving us their attention, and helping to spread the word to the public about they important role that CAP plays in emergency services and disaster relief.

Some of the press coverage can be viewed here: 

and here:

and here:

All in all, as members we can expect more intensive training with even higher performance expectations and “at tempo” realistic training scenarios.

Other missions included -
EPIRB mission, with Maj C. Johnson (IC) and 2 UDF teams.  The signal was shut down in a very fast 4-5 hours from the start.

Lt Kraus
A second ELT mission, with Maj Luneau as IC.  SM Tim Roberts earned his first find (congratulations!) and served as aircrew along with Capt Michelogiannakis (MP) and Lt Fletcher-Hernandez.

Flying privately, Maj Ironfield and Lt Hollerbach heard an ELT, which was also heard by Capt Louis Rivas.  Although none of our squadron members flew in the mission to find this ELT, we thank squadron members for listening in on the emergency channel and calling it in.

Finally, we should note that the training comes at a cost as well:  During the weekend of the SAREX, while there were two other exercises in SoCal and a national event all scheduled during the same time, a real mission occurred - and it was difficult to find available members who had not yet reached the end of their duty days.

All in all, Squadron 188 was engaged in no less than 5 missions in the month of August.  Keep up the great work!

New and Renewed Emergency Services (ES) Ratings and Awards

Maj Luneau Receiving the Silver Clasp Plus
Bronze Clasp for his Air Search and Rescue Ribbon
from Capt Hayes
Congratulations to the following members who completed or renewed their ES ratings and earned some amazing awards:

  • Maj Luneau - whose Air Search and Rescue ribbon was upgraded to a silver clasp plus a bronze clasp for flying an incredible 80 SAR sorties 
  • Maj Philip Blank completed his ICUT
  • Maj Mark Fridell completed his Mission Scanner (MS) rating - his first ES rating! 
  • Capt Michelogiannakis completed Mission Check Pilot qualifications 
    • Capt Michelogiannakis
    • As only the 4th Mission Check Pilot in Group 2, Capt Michelogiannakis joins a very select and professional group of individuals - along with Maj Jeff Ironfield, Lt Col Brett Dolnick, and Capt Ray Woo.  
  • Lts Choate and Hollerbach achieved their CD ratings
  • Lt Kraus completed his IFR Form 91 - and is now an IFR rated Mission Pilot 
  • Lt Roberts - completed MO and simultaneously earned his first Find ribbon
  • SM Ken Wayne - completed Level 1 and earned his Membership ribbon

The squadron also completed its Subordinate Unit Inspection last month.  Thank you to all who contributed to that effort.

Aerospace Education eXcellence (AEX) Minute

SM Zherebnenkov shared this month’s AEX minute by letting us know about the upcoming (Sept 27) lunar eclipse that will feature a 14% larger than normal, blood-red moon - an event that only occurs every 30 years or so.  Plan to keep watch for it!

More information can be found at NASA's site by clicking here.

 Upcoming Events

Lt Roberts Receiving his Find Ribbon from Capt Hayes
A number of squadron members will attend the Water Survival course hosted by the US Coast Guard in September.  The course will include an open water portion, held at Half Moon Bay and/or Coyote Point (depending on the weather) and a classroom portion. Participants must be MS Standards to take this course.  Thanks to Lt Chavez and Capt Hayes for organizing this training opportunity for us.

Safety Education

Lt Roberts led a discussion about Human Factors in Aviation, which included a discussion about a 1989 Air Ontario flight from Dryden Airport in Canada.  The flight crashed on takeoff, with tragic results. We discussed a number of factors that contributed to the accident chain, including, for example:

  • Pilot stress
  • Unsupportive company
  • Flight without functional auxiliary power unit
  • Delays
  • Fatigue
  • Poor crew resource management (CRM)
  • Weather
  • Cold soaking 
  • Etc.

Stay safe and break those accident chains!

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