The move comes seven months after another airman died in a mountaineering training accident in Idaho.
HURLBURT FIELD — Six months after an airman died in what the Air Force is calling an "unplanned parachute departure" from a C-130 combat aircraft over the Gulf of Mexico, Air Force Special Operations Command has recertified all of the units affected by an operational stand-down that halted parachute, mountaineering and diving training.
RELATED: (Nov. 2019) Hurlburt airman who fell into Gulf identified
The move comes seven months after another airman died in a mountaineering training accident in Idaho. Both airmen served in units within the Hurlburt Field-headquartered 24th Special Operations Wing, the only Special Tactics wing in the Air Force.
RELATED: Missing Hurlburt airman’s life ‘like a country song,’ says grieving father
Staff Sgt. Cole Condiff, 29, a combat controller, was the subject of a massive search in and along the shores of the Gulf of Mexico after the Nov. 5 incident aboard the C-130. Despite search efforts, no trace of Condiff has been found.
RELATED: AFSOC commander Slife addresses parachute training incident
That incident came less than a month after Tech. Sgt. Peter Kraines, 33, a Special Tactics pararescueman, died in an Oct. 8 mountaineering training accident near Boise, Idaho, where he fell an estimated 40 feet.
Nearly one month after Condiff’s death, on Dec. 3, AFSOC, along with the Air Force and U.S. Special Operations Command, suspended mountaineering, parachuting and diving training to review "all equipment, safety procedures and regulations pertaining to these specialized skills," Maj. Amanda Reeves, an AFSOC spokeswoman, said at the time.
"After a comprehensive evaluation is complete and any necessary changes are identified and implemented, operations are expected to resume," Reeves added in the December statement.
In an emailed response to a Daily News inquiry, Reeves said Thursday that, as of May 1, "Air Force Special Operations Command has recertified all of the units affected by the December 2019 operational stand-down to conduct parachute, dive and mountaineering activities again."
frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen>
The recertification process was conducted on a unit-by-unit basis, according to Reeves, as "subject-matter experts from across the Air Force and U.S. Special Operations Command assisted the program inspections at each unit."
From there, according to Reeves, AFSOC commander Lt. Gen. Jim Slife "approved each recertification upon recommendations from the unit leadership and AFSOC’s director of operations."
Throughout the recertification process, Reeves said, AFSOC maintained its ability to support the command’s variety of operations.
"Our obligation to our Airmen has been to ensure our regulations, training, procedures and equipment are as safe as possible," Reeves noted in the email. "We are confident resuming operations at our recertified units, knowing that we are mitigating as many risks as possible when conducting these critical mission sets."
On a related note, Reeves said Thursday that an investigation into the incident involving Condiff "is still ongoing."
"We will release details when they become available," Reeves added.