Logistics: Tire Shortage Shuts Down Su-30s

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April 1,2008: Last year, India's 60 Su-30 fighters had to cut back on training flights because of a shortage of tires. Normally, the 60 fighters go through about a hundred tires a year. But due to delays in ordering replacement tires, and delays in the Russian supplier delivering, the number on hand fell to about ten. At that point, a nagging problem became a crises. The Russians blamed it on the Indian Air Force logistics people, who did not order enough new tires to replace those being worn out. The Indian purchasing officials blamed it on the Russians, who, according to the aircraft warranty agreement, are the only ones who can supply tires for the Su-30s.

What is most embarrassing is that the air force is supposed to keep 300 tires in stock. This is a three year supply for peacetime operations, but less than a years worth if it came to war. Questions were raised as to why the stock was allowed to decline to just ten tires. Fingers were pointed in every direction, and all anyone could agree on was that someone was asleep at the switch. Stocks are now back up to a hundred tires, but the accusations are still flying between Indian and Russian officials.

 


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