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2. AIR / AMC / Fairchild airbase

Last modified: 18 Apr 2021, submitted by: Joker

Country: United States    Region: Washington

Locale: Spokane

Latitude: 47° 36' 51" N     Longitude: -118° 21' 25" E

Area use / Military Branches: ACTIVE


USAF-Air Mobility Command Fairchild, State of Washington, Activated 1942 as an army depot.Renamed Spokane Army Airfield, 1942; Spokane Air Force Base, 1948 and Fairchild Air Force Base, 1950. This was a former SAC B-52 base (1958-1994).

The base nuc Weapon Storage Area (the former Deep Creek Air Stn) at grid 47°36'40"N 117°38'17"W has a special status. Becoming ops in 1952 it should have been deactivated after the then 92nd Bomb Wing operating B-52's redesignated into 92nd Air Refuelling Wing operating KC-135's. However it remained operational and 92nd ARW remains fully nuclear certified and is operating a nuc WSA even without any bombers stationed on base. The Fairchild WSA seems to store weapons that are part of the reserve stockpile. The START II Treaty requires that, “Each Party shall locate storage areas for heavy bomber nuclear armaments no less than 100 kilometers from any air base where heavy bombers reoriented to a conventional role are based.” The Treaty permits conventional bombers to be returned into a nuclear role and the weapons at Fairchild seem to cover that aspect.

Base ultimately reassigned to Air Mobility Cmd.and currently hosting:
- 92nd Air Refueling Wing (host) operating KC-135R's
-- 92 Operations Grp with 92 and 93 Air Refueling Squadrons and 92d Operations Support Squadron
- 509th Weapons Squadron; advanced air refuelling training
- 336th Training Group; the Air Force's sole unit responsible for training Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape (SERE) tactics
- 368th Recruiting Squadron
- Joint Personnel Recovery Agency
- Det 13, 373rd Training Squadron
- Office of Special Investigations, Det. 322

- ANG 141st Air Refueling Wing operating KC-135R's. Its structure:
--141st Operations Grp with 116th Air Refuelling Squadron
--141st Maintenance; Mission Support and Medical Groups
-- 242d Combat Communications Squadron
-- 256th Intelligence Squadron

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