LRS anytime, anyplace

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Aaron Montoya
  • 49th Wing Public Affairs
Anytime, anyplace, the 49th Logistics Readiness Squadron is prepared to assist you. The responsibilities of the 49th LRS encompass many different jobs, and an important job which affects many on base is the hard-working Airmen at vehicle maintenance who keep us on the road.

The Airmen at vehicle maintenance ensure that our vehicles are always safe and operable, however cars and trucks are not the only thing they are trained to repair.

"We work on everything from the vehicles you check out from vehicle operations to fire engines and aircraft refueling trucks that keep the planes in the air. Pretty much anything on wheels that doesn't fly," said Staff Sgt. Adam Crochet, non-commissioned officer in charge of customer service. "If the vehicles here don't run, then we can't fly planes, it all funnels into the same mission."

Just having the ability to turn a wrench and fix complex problems is not what makes the vehicle maintenance Airmen great, it's their ability to provide quality service in a very short timeframe.

"We strive to return any vehicle that doesn't need new parts in less than 24 hours. If we find anything that is fixable on the spot, then we fix it on the spot," said Crochet.

There are typically three or four Airmen working customer service, and they are there to ensure the vehicles have proper paperwork and are checked in for repair. They also are able to fix smaller jobs right away to get the customer back to work immediately.

"We keep you in a vehicle instead of you having to walk everywhere," said Master Sgt. John Shaffer, 49th LRS vehicle maintenance superintendant.

"If someone brings in a vehicle and says they have a headlight out, or are in need of some fluids, then we do it while they wait. They are in and out in 15 minutes. That's part of our job in customer service," said Crochet.

Longer jobs that require new parts are still done in a timely and expedient manner.

"Anything that requires us to order parts from downtown will be done in 24 hours, unless the downtown suppliers have to order it from out of town. In that case it is usually done within a couple of days, " said Crochet. "As long as it does not require parts, everything should be returned within 15 minutes to one day."

The vehicle maintenance Airmen even fix vehicles from other squadrons that are not in their defined budget.

"There are squadrons on base that are what we call 'reimbursable squadrons', and the German Air Force is one of them. They bring a vehicle to us, and we give them a list of things that need repair, they then choose what work they want done. We initially pay for the repairs, however they reimburse us for the work, so that way it doesn't come out of our budget. We track our man hours here, and that directly corresponds to a labor charge," said Crochet.

"Our budget pays for the main squadrons such as the 49th Security Forces Squadron, 49th Civil Engineering Squadron and the 49th Logistics Readiness Squadron and so on, this is because those vehicles belong to us."

It is a busy job with very little down time, the vehicle maintenance Airmen have high work ethic standards and they work hard to meet them. They enjoy their career and the future opportunities available to them from the skills they learned on the job.

"I love vehicles, and I love my job. I have been in the career field for 21 years, I wouldn't change it for anything. This is something where I can go anywhere in the world, turn a few wrenches and get a car running again," said Shaffer.