Stalled Air Force conversions show how a seemingly straightforward job can take years in the arcane federal acquisition system
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., spearheaded the recent legislative mandates to convert the transport planes into fire tankers. It’s taking too long, she says. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
In 2013, Congress ordered the Air Force to convert seven Coast Guard transport planes into firefighting tanker aircraft, but now the first of the planes may not be ready to fight fires for several more years, nearly a decade after the initial plan was launched.
The story of the seven planes illustrates how a seemingly straightforward job can take years in the arcane federal acquisition system, even when the equipment is a matter of life and death.