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Quartermaster Professional Bulletin – Summer 1990

New Cumberland Army Depot (NCAD), PA, participated in the U.S. Army’s Operation Dragon Tail recently by delivering supplies directly from the wholesale level to awaiting soldiers on the ground at Fort Bragg, NC.

“This is the first time an airborne operation was conducted by the depot,” said Chief Warrant Officer Lester Mason, who oversees the only Air Delivery Quality Control Division within the US Army Depot System Command.

The U.S. Army has seven parachute riggers at NCAD who oversee the fabrication, receipt, storage, and issue of airborne equipment, while maintaining an 18,000 cargo parachute contingency stock. Civilian employees pack the parachutes. The riggers inspect the parachutes and rig the containers.

Fort Bragg requested supplies for five of its units. NCAD pulled 379 line items, inducing maintenance parts and soldier’s supplies, and packaged the items on six pallets totaling 5,781 pounds. Riggers, responsible for resupply by sky, rigged the completed multiwall containers on special skids into the A-22 Cargo Bag Assembly. Six A-22 containers were dropped from the C-130 aircraft used in this exercise.

The pallets were dropped 100 to 125 feet from each other as part of a strategic resupply effort for a forward area. The exercise intended to prove that the supply wholesaler, In this case NCAD, could drop supplies directly to a using unit In the front lines. This operation would be used where a plane could not land or where an airstrip was too far from the soldiers.