Westover Air Reserve Base to begin limited flight operations this week

Hampden County

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – After more than 60 days on the ground, Westover’s 439th Airlift Wing is planning to start limited flight operations this week.

This means you will soon see the military planes back in sky.

The 439th Airlift will only be flying locally, it is not completing any missions, this is a way to keep up with the plane’s maintenance and allows aircrews to practice their skills.

Lt. Col. Rodney Furr of Westover Air Reserve Base told 22News that although the pilots and aircrew are well trained, the practice is a welcome refresher.

“All their skills are very perishable so if they don’t use them they get unfamiliar with them and all our pilots and aircrew are very, very proficient but they have to maintain even higher standards directed by the Air Force,” said Lt. Col. Furr.

Westover Air Reserve Base only allows essential personnel onto the base during the pandemic. Usual drill weekends that bring hundreds of people to the base have been virtual.

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