US cargo carrier Kalitta Air (K4, Detroit Willow Run) and global freight forwarder AIT Worldwide Logistics have entered into a Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF) partnership to provide critical supply chain support for United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) missions while increasing AIT’s access to global routes, capacity, and charters.
Under CRAF, US airlines voluntarily augment Department of Defense (DOD) airlift requirements in emergencies when the need for airlift exceeds the capability of military aircraft.
USTRANSCOM coordinates missions worldwide using both military and commercial resources. It comprises three service commands, the Air Force’s Air Mobility Command, the Navy’s Military Sealift Command, and the Army’s Surface Deployment and Distribution Command. Commercial carriers can volunteer their aircraft to the CRAF programme through contractual agreements with the Air Mobility Command. In return, they are given preference in carrying commercial peacetime cargo and passenger traffic for the DOD.
In a statement, AIT’s chief business officer, Greg Weigel, said the strategic alliance with Kalitta Air would enable AIT to continue its designation as a CRAF-sponsored freight forwarder, and “as AIT continues to grow its global footprint and scope, securing a CRAF partnership with an airline with similar global reach, with some of the world’s largest cargo aircraft, made perfect sense to our team.”
According to Kalitta Air’s VP for marketing, Lynn Stauffer, the airline operates B747-400 and B777F freighters for long-range international charters and scheduled services. Its fleet also includes B737Fs and smaller jets and turboprops serving the North American market with support for time-critical charter, life sciences, and aircraft-on-ground missions. Cleared to land and take off from military bases around the world and with aircraft strategically positioned at hubs across the United States, Europe, Asia, and South America, Kalitta claims to be able to move cargo anywhere in the world in a matter of hours. Weigel concluded that the airline had been an AIT core carrier for decades.
ch-aviation fleets advanced data shows that Kalitta Air has a fleet of 33 freighters, comprising ten B747-400(BCF)s, one B747-400(ER), one B747-400ERF, thirteen B747-400FSCDs, three B767-300(ERBDSF)s, and five B777-200Fs.