A mobile caterer working at RAF Coningsby has been rewarded for his contribution to aircraft safety.

Adrian Addington, who has been running the facility on the aircraft viewing area on Dogdyke Road during the summer months for six years, is aware of the threat that foreign object debris, (FOD) poses to aircraft.

After arriving on site on several mornings to be greeted by litter, he realised that the culprits were birds taking advantage of the design of bins to gain free meals. Adrian contacted RAF Coningsby to highlight the problem and to suggest that the bins were changed for a design that was ‘crow-proof’. These new bins have now been installed, along with extra signage on the importance of a litter-free area near aircraft, i.e., a FOD-free environment.

Sqn Ldr Graham MacRury RAF Coningsby’s Foreign Object Debris Prevention Officer, said, “Birds and FOD present a significant risk to aviation as damage caused by foreign objects could cause catastrophic failure at any time. It is therefore of paramount importance that measures are taken to minimise the likelihood of FOD occurrences or bird activity around an airfield. Mr Addington has displayed outstanding awareness of the dangers to aircraft and his diligence in reporting the hazards posed by the birds, and their spreading of litter adjacent to the aircraft taxi-way, has contributed significantly to the safety of aircraft operations at RAF Coningsby. Therefore, it is our pleasure to present Adrian with a FOD Safety Certificate and invite him to tour ‘inside’ the base. Adrian and all his customers are keen aircraft enthusiasts and their support of our flying at RAF Coningsby is most welcome; I hope that all visitors will continue to keep all rubbish in the bin, and keep our aircraft safe’.

Adrian Addington said, “I am very pleased to be able to do something positive to help the RAF, particularly here at RAF Coningsby. As a side effect of their job, the aircrews give myself and my customers a lot of pleasure, it is nice to do something in return” he continued “ it was a relatively easy thing to do, it would be great if more people could support our forces in whatever way they can”