Tactical Airlift:

Observations Concerning the Air Force's C-27 Proposal

NSIAD-88-124: Published: Apr 29, 1988. Publicly Released: Apr 29, 1988.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Air Force's proposed acquisition of C-27 light utility, short-takeoff-and-landing (STOL) aircraft for the U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) and the Military Airlift Command to determine whether the: (1) Air Force adequately justified its need for the aircraft; (2) aircraft's performance capabilities would enhance mission performance; and (3) Air Force adequately considered other alternatives to acquiring new aircraft.

GAO found that: (1) the Air Force did not adequately justify its need for STOL aircraft; (2) USSOUTHCOM has performed its missions successfully using available resources; (3) the Air Force and the Army were developing a joint document which would enable the Air Force to develop better information on the equipment and personnel movement requirements for low-intensity conflict (LIC); (4) the Air Force did not adequately evaluate whether the C-27 performance specifications required procurement of a new aircraft; and (5) the Air Force did not adequately consider the options of transferring C-130 aircraft and helicopters to the commands or of upgrading C-7 aircraft as a substitute for a new airlift system.

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