Air Force nuclear missile unit fails key security test, in latest setback

By on August 14, 2013
Air Force officers look at nuclear missile at the center of Q-20 silo in northern Montana near Canadian ...

An Air Force unit responsible for dozens of nuclear missiles failed a recent safety and security inspection — a setback that comes just months after the Air Force temporarily sidelined 17 officers in connection with a prior inspection flop.

The latest failure was recorded by the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. According to Air Force Global Strike Command, the unit received an “unsatisfactory” rating during the inspection in early August after personnel made “tactical-level errors” during an exercise.

“This failure resulted in the entire inspection being graded ‘unsatisfactory,’” a statement from Global Strike Command said.

Commander Lt. Gen. Jim Kowalski stressed in the statement that the failure does not mean the safety of America’s nuclear arsenal is at risk, and that the inspections are “designed to be tough.”

But the failure comes on top of other disappointing news for the Air Force’s nuclear weapons force.

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