Foreign Object Debris (FOD) is the stuff you see lying on the pavement of a road or a parking lot that most folks would never really pay much attention to. It’s the rocks, roots, sticks and leaves that are part of our everyday lives. FOD poses few problems on the roads and highways, and we’ve all had flat tires from punctures and cracked or chipped windshields from rocks tossed up by the car or truck ahead. While frustrating to pull over to change a tire or call to have a windshield changed, FOD can have a devastating impact on on aircraft of any size.

Foreign Object Damage (FOD) is the damage caused by foreign object debris and costs the aviation industry millions of dollars each year from the damage it causes. Just because the hangar, ramp and runways are clear today does not mean they will remain that way.

The SC Aviation Safety Council is a volunteer group that was formed in 1996 to help address and coordinate safety issues here in South Carolina. They have implemented a FOD Initiative that is being implemented at a number of SC Airports.

On Saturday, a group of around 50 individuals met at the crack of dawn to walk the ramps and runways at our very own GMU. While the airport was found to be surprisingly clean, quite a bit of FOD was picked up and analyzed.

The hard work of many industry volunteers is to be applauded for their efforts in bringing the FOD Initiative to GMU. All it takes is a very small screw to flatten a tire, or be sucked into an engine for major damage to occur. By cleaning our airport, we will be much safer going forward.

Steve Wiley

VP Aviation Accounts