U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Andrew J. Moseley
Missouri Task Force 1, a civilian emergency response group, and the Missouri Army National Guard are teaming for helicopter operations, according to St. Louis media.
According to the news report, Missouri is one of five states implementing this type of program. Pennsylvania, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas reportedly have the program in place. Missouri’s program is expected to become operational during the first half of next year.
However, the task force and guard have conducted training exercises. The report said one task force member noted it is “unusual” for civilians to work this closely with the military and that it’s “very difficult” for civilians to work on a military-operated aircraft. The planning and training for this teaming has reportedly taken years.
According to its website, the Missouri National Guard operates the Boeing AH-64A, the Bell Helicopter OH-58 and the Sikorsky UH-60.