What is a Loadmaster?

A loadmaster is an active aircrew member who is responsible for loading and unloading cargo, vehicles and people on aircrafts and aircraft systems. It is important that a loadmaster has a good mathematical mind in order to accurately plan and arrange the cargo on the aircraft and ensure the comfort and safety of the passengers. Loadmasters must be able to plan the cargo load in a way that it does not overload sensitive areas of the aircraft cargo floor. A loadmaster may help physically load the cargo, but their primary role is to supervise the loading crews and the process.

In addition to planning the cargo, a loadmaster is responsible for ensuring the cargo and equipment do not shift in flight. They must direct and check the placement of restraint equipment. They also must demonstrate the use of life support equipment for any passengers. Loadmasters are always on “flying status and are considered full air crew members and are required to fly the aircraft whenever needed.responsible for loading and unloading cargo, vehicles and people on aircraft and aircraft systems. It is important that a loadmaster has a good mathematical mind in order to accurately plan and arrange the cargo on the aircraft and ensure the comfort and safety of the passengers. Loadmasters must be able to plan the cargo load in a way that it does not overload sensitive areas of the aircraft cargo floor. A loadmaster may help physically load the cargo, but their primary role is to supervise the loading crews and the process.

According to the U.S. Airforce online, the following responsibilities are completed by airdrop qualified loadmasters only:

  • Conducts cargo and personnel airdrops according to directives.
  • Attaches extraction parachutes to cargo and platforms.
  • Inspects cargo and platforms, extraction systems and connects static lines.
  • Checks tiedowns, parachutes, containers, suspension systems, and extraction systems to ensure proper cargo extraction or release.
  • Operates aircraft airdrop systems and supervises cargo and paratroopers exiting the aircraft.

Compared to many other military roles, the career field of loadmaster is relatively new. It wasn’t until 1953 at the end of the Korean War than the position of loadmaster became an Air Force Specialty Code. Prior to this they were known as Air Quarter Masters until the transfer of the Quartermasters Corps Troops flying aerial delivery missions was transferred to the US Air Force.

SYSTEMS ARE COMPLEX. YOUR CHOICE IS SIMPLE.