ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE — The 97th Maintenance Directorate has been making hangar improvements for the past year aboard the base.
These improvements were enacted to improve the working conditions for maintainers so the mission can continue without interruptions.
“Over the past year, we have added several things to the hangars around base,” said Theresa Eicholz, 97th Maintenance Directorate facilities manager. “We have bird netting in some of the hangars to deter birds from landing. We added large ceiling fans in multiple hangars to pull heat from the ceiling during the winter and to provide cool air circulation in the summer. We also added some mobile tail enclosures that allows year-round work on the aircraft.”
It was the combined efforts of the 97th Civil Engineer Squadron and the planning of the 97th Maintenance Directorate that these improvements were made around the hangars, achieving the goal of making a better work environment for the aircraft maintainers.
“I really appreciate all the new improvements because it makes doing the job smoother,” said Ramiro Solis, 97th Maintenance Directorate aircraft maintenance supervisor. “Before the installation of the fans, there was a temperature problem inside the hangars. The fans now bring down all the warm air from the ceiling, allowing us to be comfortable while still getting the job done.”
The improvements make the temperature in the hangars more stable for the maintainers and also doubles as a way to decrease health hazards.
“The amount of pigeons in the area was becoming a health hazard and having the fans and bird netting reduces that health problem,” Solis said.
The bird netting discourages birds from landing, which encourages the birds to leave the area allowing a non-lethal alternative to get rid of them. Less birds’ means less unwanted debris and waste providing better working conditions to the building occupants.
Members of the 97th Maintenance Directorate have worked to expand and improve its work environment for the maintainers. The hangar improvements aim to keep the maintenance working conditions safe, controlling health concerns and enabling them to work on aircraft year-round.
Reach Airman 1st Class Cody Dowell at 580-481-7700.