Each Goodyear airship has a team of highly qualified specialists, safely operating equipment, much of which is specially designed for the airship program. Four pilots, 16 ground crewmembers and a public relations manager support and maintain each operation. As special ambassadors of the company, each associate comes in contact with thousands of people each year. Personnel are selected for their communications skills as well as professional abilities.
The pilot-in-charge on each operation is responsible for the crew, equipment. Based on weather conditions and other circumstances, the decision to fly on any given day belongs to the pilot-in-charge.
New pilots must undergo a comprehensive Goodyear lighter-than-air (LTA) flight training program that can last up to six months. Following successful Federal Aviation Administration testing, the pilot receives an LTA airship rating.
Crew members serve dual roles. In addition to landing and launching the airship during flight operations, they serve as electronics technicians, airship and vehicle mechanics, riggers and administrative assistants.
The airship and all the vehicles are linked by private two-way radio communications.
It is important to note that in addition to the specific duties and responsibilities listed here all crew and pilots are trained in some form of ground handling, static watch (when the blimp is on the mast for an extended length of time) and safe passenger operations. Crew members have a CDL (Commercial Drivers License) which allows them to drive a bus and 18-wheel tractor-trailer.