The drone program is not only controversial for the military but also proving to be expensive. The Defense Department is already having hard time in justifying the collateral damage caused by drones. The army is thinking about restructuring the drone training systems after federal report highlighted the budgetary concerns. RQ-7 Shadow, one of the high tech drones’ pilots are not being able to complete the training period despite million dollar investments. They are wasting their time in performing less important tasks like janitorial services, lawn care and guarding duties.
Government Accountability Office report published in May exposed many negatives sides of the program. The lack of efficiency in implementation was studied by Congress’ investigative branch. General Raymond Odierno, Chief of Staff, US Army also spoke about this issue recently in Washington, D.C. Soon to be retired general discussed the problem with defense reporters. He further added that army is doing training at various locations and it needs to consolidate it, so that efficiency of the program can be increased. There is lack of regulatory body to control the process.
The general didn’t inform where the program will be moved. The unmanned aerial system’s initial qualification school is based at Fort Huachuca in Arizona. The eight-week long course prepares army cadets in topics like flight safely, aerodynamics and navigation. The second level of the course involves practical experience to fly MQ-5 Hunter, MQ-1C Gray Eagle and RQ-7 Shadow. This stage is as long as 25 weeks. The army also started new training center at Fort Rucker, Alabama.