Two months ago came news that there was a shortage of military drones. Thursday came news that there’s a shortage of drone pilots, too.
Per Deborah Lee James, secretary of the Air Force…
The number of Air Force pilots needed to fly a growing number of missions worldwide has not kept up with demand. There are currently 988 Predator and Reaper pilots, but the Air Force is supposed to have 244 more drone pilots, James said, and not as many new pilots are coming in annually to replace the 240 who leave the drone force each year.
“This is a force that is under significant stress from what is an unrelenting pace of operations,” said James.
Oh, and “the sensor operators, the maintenance teams and the intelligence analysts” who are part of the drone-related workforce are also under stress, according to the Pentagon.