Based at McChord Air Force Base
, the Western Air Defense Sector (WADS)
is one of two air defense sectors responsible for the security and integrity of U.S.
air space (the other sector is the NEADS
. WADS is specifically responsible for all air space west of the Mississippi River
. WADS is staffed by members of the Washington Air National Guard
(WANG) and the Canadian Forces Air Command
(AIRCOM). Operationally, WADS reports to the North American Aerospace Defense Command
(NORAD) headquartered at Peterson Air Force Base
. WADS tactically falls under the First Air Force
(1 AF) at Tyndall Air Force Base
and Air Combat Command
(ACC) at Langley Air Force Base
WADS mission is:
"Western Air Defense Sector personnel guard America’s western skies. We do this mission every day, 24 hours a day. The men and women of the Western Air Defense Sector detect, identify, track and can scramble fighters to intercept unknown or threatening airborne objects."
This mission requires close coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).