PAF pilots get F-16 familiarization flight in US

Philippine Air Force (PAF) pilots traveled to Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina to learn about United States Air Force’s 20th Fighter Wing mission from May 21 to 23.

US Air Force Lt. Col. Brandon McBrayer, 20th Operations Group deputy commander, sits while a member of the Philippine Air Force gives a thumbs up in an F-16DM Fighting Falcon at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 23, 2018. The F-16 familiarization flight was the capstone for the tour of the 20th Fighter Wing. US Air Force photo

US 20th Fighter Wing said the purpose of the tour was to familiarize Filipino pilots with 20th Fighter Wing agencies and the suppression of enemy air defenses mission.

“The Philippine Airmen inspected an F-16CM Fighting Falcon in phase, toured Shaw’s 20th Logistics Readiness Squadron’s storage facilities, received a briefing on survival, evasion, resistance and escape techniques and flew in a familiarization flight,” 20th Fighter Wing said.

A member of the Philippine Air Force hangs in a harness at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., May 22, 2018. Pilots must qualify on survival, evasion, resistance and escape training before flying to ensure proper action in the case of an aerial emergency. US Air Force photo

20th Operations Group deputy commander Lieutenant Colonel Brandon McBrayer said the activity was a good opportunity to show how the US Air Force runs fighter operations.

He added that it was also an opportunity to build relationships in the Pacific theater.

“Maintaining and strengthening relationships with allies is important for the Air Force. Team Shaw pursues this charge by sharing its mission with our partners in the Philippines,” the 20th Fighter Wing noted.