Air National Guard:

C-131 and Alternative Operational Support Aircraft

NSIAD-86-86: Published: Mar 31, 1986. Publicly Released: Mar 31, 1986.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the: (1) status and condition of the Air National Guard C-131 aircraft; (2) Air Force's and Air National Guard's mission needs and operational requirements with respect to the aircraft; and (3) cost-effectiveness of re-engining and modifying the aircraft as compared with other proposed alternatives.

GAO found that, as of September 1985, Guard units had 32 C-131 aircraft, then sent 6 to storage or air museums and replaced them with 6 C-12F aircraft. Despite being about 30 years old, the remaining 26 aircraft had accumulated relatively low operating time when compared to commercial versions of the C-131 aircraft. GAO found that: (1) modification and re-engining of the C-131 aircraft is feasible and would address most of the aircraft's operational, support, and safety problems; (2) neither the Air Force nor the Guard have specified mission needs and operational requirements for support aircraft; (3) a wartime requirement for the Guard C-131 aircraft has not been defined or documented; and (4) the cost-effectiveness of the re-engining and modifying the aircraft or selecting a replacement aircraft is dependent on mission needs and operational requirements which neither the Air Force nor individual Guard units have adequately defined.

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