"Guarding America's Skies"
The Western Air Defense Sector, with headquarters at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, is one of two sectors responsible to the Continental U.S. North American Aerospace Defense Command Region (CONR) and the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) for peacetime air sovereignty, strategic air defense, and airborne counterdrug operations in the continental United States. WADS is a Washington Air National Guard unit which operationally reports directly to First Air Force at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.
WADS is made up of personnel from the Washington Air National Guard, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, Title 5 Civilians and the Royal Canadian Air Force.
This bi-national organization exercises operational control of ANG fighter aircraft, primarily F-15 Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcons, on continuous alert and uses radar data and the radio capabilities of Joint Surveillance System sites located throughout the western United States. These sites, jointly funded and used by the Department of Defense and the Federal Aviation Administration, are operated and maintained by FAA personnel. The Sector also uses radar data from tethered aerostats and gap filler radars to improve its low level coverage of the southwestern border.