The tail gunner protected the rear of an aircraft. The tail gunner compartment was one of the tightest, second to the ball turret underneath the plane. The tail gunner sat on a bicycle type seat in a kneeling position for the majority of the mission. The tail area was drafty and frostbite was a constant issue. As the only rear-facing crewmember, he was also responsible for passing along information about things behind the aircraft, such as enemy fighters or the condition of the flying formation, to the rest of the crew.