Air Force revamping rescue exercise staged from Arizona base
By The Associated Press
PHOENIX (AP) -
The Air Force is doing a reset on a large training exercise during which helicopter crews and other personnel use parts of Arizona and neighboring states to practice rescues and extractions of downed aviators and other service members.
Air Force officers say the decade-old Angel Thunder exercise run from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson is increasing in frequency to twice annually while being reduced to about a third of the size of previous exercises.
Lt. Col. Christopher Cunningham said the exercise has gradually increased in size and scope since 2006 and that the changes being made will focus it more on the Air Force's training needs.
Angel Thunder exercises this year are scheduled for May and November.
Possible training sites are in Arizona, California, Nevada and New Mexico.