Boeing’s KC-46 program has little room for more delays, says Air Force general

A senior Air Force general says there is little room left for delays on Boeing’s KC-46 tanker program, the Air Force Times reported Wednesday.

Lt. Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, the USAF’s top acquisition official told reporters that wiring issues on the tanker have been “more challenging” to fix than Boeing probably expected.

“If there are additional challenges going forward, it will be harder to overcome and still hold that [timetable] because you already used the margin that is out there,” she said.

The program’s first test flight is still expected to happen before the end of the year, she said.

That is about six months later than originally expected.

Boeing has to deliver the first 18 tankers by August 2017.

That milestone is still achievable, but delays now are eating up the schedule’s padding, Pawlikowski said.

The tanker is based on Boeing’s 767-200 and assembled at its Everett plant.

Dan Catchpole: 425-339-3454;; Twitter: @dcatchpole.

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