Unit emblem AFB Overberg


AFB Overberg


We provide an operational capability in support of flight testing to the SANDF in the service of our country.

AFB Overberg hosts the Test Flight and Development Centre of the South African Air Force as well as 525 Squadron. The base is situated in one of South Africa’s most beautiful coastal areas and boasts rare Cape indigenous wildlife and vegetation. In winter mist often covers the base until midmorning while in summer on a clear day you can see forever.

At AFB Overberg personnel go beyond loyalty to the South African Air Force - they have a deep rooted passion for their work, community and environment. The base policies are entrenched with commitment to zero error and personnel belief that in order to be competitive in the world of international test flying, they have to do the job correctly the first time.

AFB Overberg is uniquely placed under the command of the Air Office stationed in Pretoria, Gauteng and report directly to the Air Office regarding air operations.

In 1998, seven base members elected to do the Navy Swimmers Course at Naval Base Simonstown. This provided AFB Overberg with a true Search and Rescue capability, capable of being deployed within 45 min. AFB Overberg is the only SAAF unit in the RSA which has its own independent Search and Rescue capability and in addition these swimmers are utilized to recover Target Drones etc.

Furthermore Emergency Exercises are held on a regular basis in conjunction with the Southern District Council Rescue Services and the SA Police Services.

Visiting aircraft (civilian) to the base must request authorization from the Air Office in Pretoria prior to departing for the unit. The Air Office can be contacted in Pretoria, telephone no: 012 3122034.

Normal hours of duty are from 07:45 to 16:15 Monday to Friday.
Aircraft routing through FAR 147 during working hours should contact the Air Traffic Controller at (028) 425-4079 or after hours at (028) 425-4111.


 Location Map



 Mission, Vision and Values

Vision Statement
Excellence in flight-test support.

Mission Statement
We provide an operational capability in support of flight testing to the SANDF in the service of our country.

Value Statement
With the challenges of the SAAF 2012 Vision, AFB Overberg decided to adopt the SAAF Value system as our own. We have four values, which are human dignity, excellence in all we do, integrity and service before self that are explained as follows:

Human Dignity
Respecting the human dignity of all individuals. Treating others the way you would expect to be treated through the following:

  • Respect.
  • Tolerance.
  • Fairness.
  • Consideration.

A sustained passion to continuously improve individual and organisational performance through:

  • Personal Excellence.
  • Team Excellence.
  • Leadership Excellence.
  • Service Excellence.
  • Operational Excellence.
  • Military Professionalism.

To be honourable and follow ethical principles, to be faithful to convictions, to practise what you preach. Integrity forms the cornerstone for building trust which consists of the following:

  • Honesty.
  • Credibility.
  • Trustworthiness.
  • Transparency.
  • Service Before Self.

Professional SAAF duties preference over personal desires
This value is broken down in the following characteristics:

  • Loyalty.
  • Love for country.
  • Commitment.
  • Sacrifice.
  • Devotion.
  • Faithfulness.
  • Pride.
  • Courage.
  • Military Discipline.


  Aviation Safety

(Also see Telemetry at TFDC). It is the goal of the Officer Commanding of AFB Overberg to obtain safe mission accomplishments through dynamic support programs by utilising the talents and experience of effective (trained) personnel as well as resource management. The objectives of this program are as follows:

  • The provision of a safe and healthy working environment for all employees at AFB Overberg (Accidents are neither expected nor acceptable and thus the only acceptable accident rate is zero).
  • Prevention of flying, ground and weapon accidents (All accidents can be prevented and restrictions for optimum performances in preventative measures will not be acceptable)
  • Minimisation of the extent of property damage and severity of personnel injuries caused by accidents (Corrective and preventative actions are to be applied to the causes and not the results).
  • Prevention of damage to private or public property and injuries to non-air force personnel (Crash plan) as a result of air force activities (Positive dynamic attitudes will prevent accidents).
  • Elimination of design deficiencies, unsafe acts and unsafe conditions (Activity and pressure of work cannot be used to justify accidents and therefore disciplinary failure necessitates punishment).
  • An effective, detailed and accurate reporting system for analytical purposes.
  • Aviation Safety Audits to be carried out at intervals as prescribed by the Aviation Safety and SHERQ Manual (MRI 009098).

It is an executive leadership goal at AFB Overberg that everybody be involved in aviation safety aspects and comply with the above mentioned criteria. By taking ownership of our working environment, tasks, safety precautions and procedures, as well as the responsibility for reporting all unsafe situations and actions, we will be able to prevent any aviation accidents at AFB Overberg.


 Efficiency and Quality Assurance

Shortened AFB Overberg Efficiency and Quality Assurance Policy:

It is AFB Overberg Command Council’s policy to strive for the highest standards of quality and efficiency by using the SAEM as a management tool in conjunction with all other available SANDF policies and procedures. All employees are volunteer employees and therefore automatically accept a moral obligation to their employer, the South African Air Force, to ensure those operations under their care, custody and control are carried out in a safe and efficient (quality) controlled manner. Co-operation, teamwork (Bathopele - People first principals) and a safety conscientious work manner are essential tools in order to accomplish mutual responsibilities. The Commanding Officer is committed to strive to create and maintain a positive work force, willing and eager to achieve maximum efficiency and productivity with the available resources at their disposal.


 ISO 14001 Certification

The idea of conforming to an international standard within the Department of Defence (DoD) might not be so far fetched as we think.

As far back as the middle of 1999, after a base command-council decision, Test Flight and Development Centre (TFDC) started a project to have the base certified. The project was put under command of the environmental officer of the base. After consultation with the various departments and sections in the demarcated zones the necessary information was gathered with regards to the activities and certification aspects in the zones. A complete register was drawn-up for the base; this register was used as a basis from which various documents could be compiled. The idea was to compile documents for each aspect and implement the procedures. One of these documents was the operational procedure. Since this new way of thinking would have the greatest impact on the day to day running of the base. The lessons learnt could then be used for future implementations.

It was not until the end for October 2000, when a new facet moved in over TFDC, that the project gained momentum. The possibility of commercialisation burst on to the scene. All at once the idea of certification made sense. Should TFDC be commercialised and venture onto open market where competition could be stiff at times, having an ISO 14001 certificate on the wall was an added advantage.

Work started in all passion. The environmental management system manual needed to be complied. This manual would be the heart of the system. Every requirement of the system would be addressed within the manual. Environmental legislation became a necessity. Since the base was in possession of a Local Area Network system this problem was solved because any member on the base could enter the website and search for the applicable legislation.

To correct certain aspects that needed better management within the industrial and natural environment, clear objectives and targets was set. Environmental management programmes were also implemented to act as execution platform for the objectives and targets. Responsibilities and target dates guided the zone personnel towards completion of the above mentioned deadlines.

Since the system takes up a lot of energy and time, management appointed the environmental officer as the EMS co-ordinator as well as zone representatives to assist him with necessary duties. Training on the base started with basic awareness training given to every person working on the base. Zone representatives received additional training and personnel having an impact on the environment received specialised training.

Communication was formalised in two categories, internal and external. The environmental officer was responsible for all internal communication. External communication was done in collaboration with the Officer Commanding and public relations officer. At first an advertisement was placed in the local newspaper stating TFDC’s intentions with regards to ISO 14001 certification. At a later stage an open day was held at TFDC, the public was invited to attend a presentation where the impacts on the environment were highlighted as well as the management thereof.

At the end of January 2001 the SABS performed the stage one audit. During this audit they focused on the EMS system. In total 30 findings were logged, of these 24 were applicable on the system and six were technical. To put this in perspective, after Overberg Test Range’s (OTR) phase 1 audit they had 41 findings against them. Worst case up to date after a stage one audit performed by the SABS is 167 findings. This shows clearly that TFDC performed extremely well under the circumstances, taking into consideration the involvement of the private sector in flight test activities at TFDC. TFDC was given three months to rectify the findings after which the phase two audit would take place.

During the three-month period various corrections were made to the system. Monitoring and measurement was introduced at all levels were an impact occurred. Non-conformances were logged, recommendations made and implemented. An internal audit took place through which additional faults were identified. A management review was held whereby the suitability, adequacy and effectiveness of the system were confirmed.

The stage two audit took place in middle of May 2001. After an intense two day audit seven findings were made of which five were applicable on the system and two technical. This was merely administrative of nature.

During the closing meeting the auditors told members of the base command council that TFDC would be recommended for certification. To say the least, from the EMS co-ordinator side this was a unit effort. Without the support of every member it would not have been possible for TFDC to rise to the occasion.

Altogether we look at five advantages for the unit after implementation of the system namely:

  • Compliance with environmental legislation.
  • Assessment of environmental performance.
  • Responsibility towards the community through environmental awareness.
  • Greater efficiency, decrease in waste, recycling and re-use of products as well as savings in water and electricity consumption.
  • Being recognised as an environmentally safe marketer in the international arena. Thus it would be easier to win contracts being ISO 14001 certified as internationally requested.



Shortened AFB Overberg Productivity Policy:

With the budget constraints imposed on the South African Air Force, it is imperative that more is achieved with less input (definition of efficiency). This will only be possible if all personnel actively participate in methods and programs to minimise consumption of limited recourses. It is the general believe that measurement and analysis of productivity in the military environment would be very difficult because of the fact that we “use” and do not “produce”. Notwithstanding this presumption, the Total Quality Management Policy (MRI 007775) and the SAEM will be ustilised as tools to measure efficiency at AFB Overberg. It is also the wish of the Officer Commanding that AFB Overberg personnel support all programs, systems or methods that are implemented to curb losses/wastages and increase productivity.

When statistical analysis is performed, the following factors/criteria should be taken into consideration in order to attain a baseline for effective managerial adjustments:

  • Why did the performance, efficiency or completion rate of tasks increase or decrease?
  • What were the lessons learnt?
  • What and where must adjustments be made to increase performance/efficiency?
  • What were the overall costs or time saving factors?

Impact on society. What was each Department’s contribution/impact on the internal society and external society?

Customer satisfaction. How many tasks/jobcards received in comparison with how many tasks/jobcards completed?

People satisfaction. Which external and internal factors made people happy/unhappy? In the case of patterned absenteeism which corrective actions were taken?

Supplier and partnership performances. What material/DPW jobcards are outstanding according to the budget planner? What is the reason for outstanding demands? How will this affect operational or OHS capabilities?

Organisation results. Is budget spending according to plan, and if not, provide the reasons? What are the other issues / crisis management factors and what was done about it? Which departmental achievements were accomplished? Which departmental goals were reached in the preceding quarter and what are the goals for the next quarter?


 Sport and Recreation

Shortened AFB Overberg Sport and Recreation Policy:

All AFB OVB uniformed members shall take responsibility for their own physical fitness and health by maintaining a lifestyle that promotes optimal health and physical readiness. They shall meet and maintain the SANDF’s fitness standards through participation in available sport types, fitness and recreational programs whilst under the command and control of AFB Overberg. All Uniformed members will be subjected to periodic physical evaluation tests (As required by the SG Publication No 00001/2003). The objectives with physical training and the promotion of sport and recreation at AFB Overberg are as follows:

Physical. Increase energy; improves posture and physical appearance; promotes weight control; improves flexibility; improves muscular strength and endurance; reduces osteoporosis; reduce risk of coronary heart diseases.

Psychological. Improves psychological resilience; improves capability to make sound decisions under pressure; enhances team cohesion; develops leadership in a competitive environment; develops ability to communicate effectively; develops social acceptable interpersonal skills.

Emotional. Relieves tension; aids in stress management; improves self-image; balances emotional swings; provides time for adult play.

Social. Enhances relationships with family and friends; increases opportunity for social contacts.

Intellectual. Develops harmony of mind and body; increases alertness; enhances concentration; motivates positive personal habits (cessation of smoking, reducing drug and alcohol and better nutritional use); stimulates creative thoughts.

Occupational. Less absenteeism; more productivity; decrease in days of disability; lower medical care costs; lower job turnover rate; increase networking possibilities.



Shortened AFB Overberg Training Policy:

Training is the building block for development, experience and progress. The overall development of AFB Overberg personnel cannot be complete without formal, functional and developmental training. As TFDC is a test flight facility, it is crucial that every member be competent and current in every aspect of his/her sphere of responsibility. AFB Overberg cannot afford any mistakes due to inadequate training methods or untrained personnel. The Officer Commanding appeals to every member at AFB Overberg to ask questions, to follow publicised (authorised) procedures, and to educate themselves to the highest level of their ability.


 Upcoming Event

Fly-in 2005
25 to 27 November 2005

The fly-in will be hosted at Air Force Base Overberg (TFDC) over the period 25 to 27 November 2005. The main event which is the open day will be on 26 Nov. This is the day that the gates will be open to the public to come and view the static displays and see the various aircraft visiting the base. Detail of the flying events will be made available as we get nearer to the date and air show slots have been allocated.

Visiting aircraft are welcome to start arriving from the morning of 25 Nov and enjoy the day with the base personnel. Please take cognisance of the fact that although the airfield will be open for arrivals on the morning of 26 Nov the timeslot will be limited.

On arrival, pilots will be required to register at the information office, where information packages on the planned events will be available, as well as brochures on the area for sightseeing and accommodation. Crew can camp under the wing or use one of the many guest houses in the area. Ablution facilities will be available 24 hrs.

Hangar facilities (subject to availability) will be made available to micro light aircraft, with flex wings ("trikes") having priority, should the wind be a problem. (First come, first served on the day).

Fuel availability
Only Avgas will be available. Those that use normal "car" fuel must please make alternative arrangements. Payment for fuel will only be by means of a bank guaranteed cheque or cash. No credit card facility will be available.

Presentations - 25 Nov
It is planned to present some workshops on the day preceding the fly-in. Current program as follows:


  • Pre-flight inspections.
  • Propeller blending.
  • NDT.

Identification and prevention of corrosion.


Sheet metal

  • Identification of defects.
  • Type of minor airframe repairs.


  • Types of welding.
  • Identification of weak welding joints.


  • Importance of First Aid kits.
  • Flares.

Aircraft electrical.

Aviation fuel

  • Properties of aircraft fuel.
  • Importance of the purity of aircraft fuel.

The total time of the above is approximately 3 hours. All pilots are welcome to attend.

Air Traffic Control Information
All information regarding detail of the airfield and runways, let down plates, frequencies, co-ordinates and airspace boundaries are available for download by clicking the respective disks. The files are zipped .pdf files to make them as small as possible but of high quality. If you experience any problems please contact us for alternative arrangements.

Flight Plans: Please file departure flight plans on arrival at the registration office, or at least by Saturday 26 Nov 13h00.

General Flying: Pilots would be free to do general recreational flying in the area over the period of the fly-in. ATC will advise on any restrictions should any military testing be in progress. The airspace around the airfield will be closed on Saturday during the air displays. ATC will control the airspace and advise incoming traffic accordingly. General recreational flying would be possible before and after the air displays, provisionally planned for 09h00 to 15h00 on Saturday, 26 November.

Unfortunately accommodation on the base is very limited. In the event that such facilities are required please contact the Cape Agulhas Tourism Bureau. Their contact details are:

Tel: 028 424 2584

Fax: 028 425 2731

E-mail: suidpunt@brd.dorea.co.za

Food, Beverage and Novelty Stalls
Various food, beverage and novelty stalls will be available during the AFB Overberg 2005 fly-in.
Contact persons: Leon Jansen van Vuuren - (028) 425-4190 or Phillip Kapp - (028) 425-4160.

Flying Program
Will be published in the near future.

Contact Details
E-Mail: overbergatc@telkomsa.net
Fax: (028) 425-4227
Lt Col Chris Meiring: (028) 425- 4111

General enquiries:
F/Sgt Elsje de Villiers: (028) 425-4204

Flight related enquiries:
Lt Col G. Struthers: (028) 425-4081


 Contact details

Officer Commanding
AFB Overberg
Private Bag X14
South Africa

Tel: +27 28 425-4004
Fax: +27 28 425-4227


 Photo gallery


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