Navy cutting maintenance, cannibalizing planes amid readiness crisis

By Hope Hodge Seck, for DoD Buzz

Nov 10, 2017

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The head of naval aviation told Congress on Thursday that ongoing aviation troubles, with high operational tempo and limited funding, continue to tax the service and force cuts to operations back home.

In prepared remarks for the House Armed Services Committee, Vice Adm. Troy Shoemaker testified that some carrier air wings have already cut maintenance back from two shifts to one due to lack of manning amid constant deployments.

He said the force continues to feel the effects of the 2011 Budget Control Act, which put limits on defense spending, effective for 10 years.

“We’ve been forced to take risks in maintenance and production and, as a result, our ability to fix and produce up aircraft and therefore train aviators has suffered,” Shoemaker said in his remarks.

The Navy has been hit hard, he said, as naval presence has been increasingly required across the world.

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