Wing Inspection Team test unit readiness

Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist Tech. Sgt. Jason Ganner, left, has help with his EOD 9 suit from Staff Sgt. Rachel Fleming, right, during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014 at the Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. Both members are assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Frank Page, courtesy 142nd Fighter Wing Inspection Team/Released)

Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist Tech. Sgt. Jason Ganner, left, has help with his EOD 9 suit from Staff Sgt. Rachel Fleming, right, during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014 at the Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. Both members are assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Frank Page, courtesy 142nd Fighter Wing Inspection Team/Released)

Staff Sgt. Rachel Fleming prepares a robot before it will be used to move a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Frank Page, courtesy 142nd Fighter Wing Inspection Team/Released)

Staff Sgt. Rachel Fleming prepares a robot before it will be used to move a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Frank Page, courtesy 142nd Fighter Wing Inspection Team/Released)

A robot operated remotely by an Explosive Ordinance Disposal member is moved into position to retrieve a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

A robot operated remotely by an Explosive Ordinance Disposal member is moved into position to retrieve a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

A robot operated remotely by an Explosive Ordinance Disposal member picks up a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

A robot operated remotely by an Explosive Ordinance Disposal member picks up a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Tech. Sgt. Jason Ganner, an Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist, x-rays a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore.  (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Tech. Sgt. Jason Ganner, an Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist, x-rays a suspicious package during a Wing Inspection Team exercise, Aug. 1, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Master Sgt. Waymon Hubbard, an Explosive Ordinance Disposal specialist, assigned to the 142nd FW Civil Engineer Squadron, inspects a training mannequin during a base exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore., Aug. 2, 2014. The exercise scenario had one individual detonated after moving a box from the roadway. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Tech. Sgt. Aaron Perkins, 142nd Fighter 
Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Master Sgt. Waymon Hubbard, an Explosive Ordinance Disposal specialist, assigned to the 142nd FW Civil Engineer Squadron, inspects a training mannequin during a base exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore., Aug. 2, 2014. The exercise scenario had one individual detonated after moving a box from the roadway. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Tech. Sgt. Aaron Perkins, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Michele Marshall, far left, goes through a roll call of Medical Group staff members after a build evacuation drill as part of the exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Chief Master Sgt. Michele Marshall, far left, goes through a roll call of Medical Group staff members after a build evacuation drill as part of the exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen Tech. Sgt. Matthew Shifflette, left, and Tech. Sgt. Mark (Gus) Johnson, right, use a laptop computer to continue their work after a building evacuation drill during an exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014. Both Shifflette and Johnson are maintenance specialist assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Commutations Flight. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen Tech. Sgt. Matthew Shifflette, left, and Tech. Sgt. Mark (Gus) Johnson, right, use a laptop computer to continue their work after a building evacuation drill during an exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014. Both Shifflette and Johnson are maintenance specialist assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Commutations Flight. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Members from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron look over a base map after a building evacuation exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Members from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron look over a base map after a building evacuation exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

Senior Master Sgt. Linda Baugher, far right, a Wing Inspection Team member takes notes after receiving feedback from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron has evacuated a building during an exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)
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Senior Master Sgt. Linda Baugher, far right, a Wing Inspection Team member takes notes after receiving feedback from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron has evacuated a building during an exercise conducted by the Wing Inspection Team, Aug. 2, 2014, Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs/Released)

PORTLAND AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Ore. -- The Wing Inspection Team conducted a readiness exercise July 31- Aug 3., that challenged the 142nd Fighter Wing members under a variety of conditions that focused on the overall mission capabilities.

This was the first exercise to use the Wing Inspection Team (WIT) members, which is part of the U. S. Air Force inspection system helping to restructure how inspections are now conducted. The goal of the WIT is to offer the wing commander an impartial assessment on the wing's ability to accomplish the mission.

"Instead of focusing on an external event, we've been given the approval to build something that exercises more likely scenarios," said Lt. Col. Frank Page, 142nd Fighter Wing Inspector Planner.

Some of the test scenarios involved elements of the Civil Engineer Squadron's Explosive Ordnance Disposal and Base Fire department, as well as medical and security forces members.

"The Wing Inspection Team members come from the units we are testing and the benefit of this exercise is to build a stronger and more effective unit," said Page.

The overall plan and implementation of these types of exercises now resides at the wing-level Inspector General office with support from the Wing Inspection Team. These subject matter experts were sworn in last year by the wing commander, Col. Rick Wedan. They conduct independent evaluations through inspections and other means of testing the Wing's readiness.

"It's so refreshing to see the new Air Force Inspection System change the way we think about evaluation and exercises," said Wedan. "Putting outdated and irrelevant evaluation scenario in the rear view mirror is a step in the right direction."

In previous Phase I and II inspections, the wing would ramp up months before and spend significant time and resources over several UTA periods preparing for that inspection. By managing the process at the wing level, manpower and budgetary savings were important considerations to the new inspection process.

"We were spending extraordinary resources preparing for inspections to make ourselves "Inspection-Ready." The Air Force realized this, and decided it was time to shift the focus to being Mission-Ready every day", said Wedan.

The change in the inspection procedure challenged many members of the wing to get past the old "Base X" mindset. Going forward Wedan noted, "We'll need to take a close look at the way we disseminate critical, timely mission-oriented information in this new environment."

Some areas of the base saw more action than others during the four days of the inspection.

Overall, Wedan said that he saw, "the team with their game faces on, doing their level best to make the weekend a success."