A clear path for Humanitarian Aid to Haiti

  • Published
  • By David R. Hopper, 557th Weather Wing Public Affairs

Members of the 25th Operational Weather Squadron in Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz. recently provided a steady stream of meteorological and oceanographic capabilities to facilitate the USAID-led humanitarian response to the earthquake in Haiti on Aug. 14, 2021.

The requirements were tasked to the 25th OWS “Bobcats” by U.S. Southern Command.

“During this time of humanitarian crisis, the Bobcats surged to meet requirements tasked by USSOUTHCOM and stood up a Joint Operational Area Forecast and three new Terminal Aerodrome Forecast sites overnight,” said Lt. Col. William Frey, 25th OWS commander.

Many of the 25th OWS Airmen worked 12 hours for multiple days while others adjusted their schedules to help fill in the gaps to accomplish the mission. In addition, sister squadrons across the 1st Weather Group stepped up to execute distributed operations. Airmen from the 15th Operational Weather Squadron at Scott Air Force Base, Ill. and the 26th Operational Weather Squadron at Barksdale Air Force Base, La. stepped up to produce vital flight hazard charts for USNORTHCOM, a mission normally assigned to the 25th OWS, as the Bobcats surged to meet USSOUTHCOM requirements.

“You showed your agility by responding to multiple requests for mission-specific briefings enabling flights of personnel, equipment, and life-saving supplies into and out of Haiti,” Frey said. “Together, we generated an advantage for the Joint, Inter-agency, multi-national team, enabling efficient flight paths and optimal timing for missions while also allowing planners to anticipate and avoid areas and times where weather would interfere with the mission.”

The 21-day around-the-clock endeavor consisted of 671 missions that delivered more than 587,000 pounds of supplies and assisted or rescued 477 people.