Local

November 22, 2013

Engineers prepare for action downrange

56th Civil Engineer Squadron members perform a foreign object debris walk during the completion of bivouac training Nov. 15 at Gila Bend Air Force Auxiliary Field. The 48-hour training exercise consisted of building a bare base from the ground up.

The 56th Civil Engineer Squadron embarked on an annual training exercise to help them prepare for deployments known as Prime BEEF Nov. 13 and 14 at Gila Bend Air Force Auxiliary Field in Arizona.

CES Airmen participated in bivouac training, which included scenarios that challenged their job knowledge, operational capabilities and decision-making skills.

“It’s critical that we provide the opportunity for our Airmen to train in real-world environments,” said 1st Lt. Benjamin Fink, 56th CES Emergency Management Flight officer. “The austere Gila Bend location helped provide some realism to our training and brought the exercise to the next level.”

Senior Airman Emilio Cardenas-Martinez, 56th CES electrician, fixes the frame on a door.

CES departed Luke Air Force Base and arrived at a dirt lot in Gila Bend to begin the exercise. The engineers’ first order of business was to set up an operational base, built from the ground up, running and fully functional before sundown. Their first training scenario took place while building the tents. Simulated terrorists attempted to enter the base. This was one of the new elements added to the bivouac.

CES leadership assigned a group of Airmen to take defensive fighting positions and secure the area while the rest of CES finished building camp.

“This was a chance to test our Airmen’s readiness and to make sure they’re prepared for anything,” said Master Sgt. Robert Dwyer, 56th CES Prime BEEF manager. “You never know what’s going to happen when you’re downrange, so it’s important to prepare now.”

The empty dirt lot turned into a temporary encampment in about two hours. The Airmen had an hour to unpack and get situated in their tents before evening formation. After the formation, the Airmen were released, but the camp was on Force Protection Condition Charlie, so they couldn’t leave the tents. The camp lights were shut off and Airmen at defensive fighting positions used night-vision goggles to scan the area for potential threats. By 8 p.m. the camp was at Force Protection Condition Alpha and the CES Airmen were able to shower and prepare for the long day ahead.

56th Civil Engineer Squadron Airmen patrol the area during bivouac training after a report of a simulated terrorist attack.

The exercise began with simulated ground attacks. The Airman at the DFPs defended the base while everyone else went into their tents for protection. There were dedicated runners who would run to different DFPs to deliver information received from the commanding office. The exercise scenario then changed from ground attacks to air attacks. The tents became simulated hard-sheltered buildings and the DFPs were simulated underground bunkers. There were simulated injuries during the attacks and runners used their self-aid and buddy care skills to save the Airmen.

“The bivouac allowed civil engineers to practice our critical wartime tasks,” Fink said. “The way our squadron went to work and got the job done once we had ‘boots on the ground’ was amazing to watch.”

After the simulated attacks, they began the last of their exercises – land navigation.

They split the camp into two teams. Each team had four squads. Their mission was to use a digital compass to type in the coordinates and find the locations. There were eight checkpoints total. Each checkpoint had a different event to complete, such as team blindfold course, identifying unexploded ordnance, a Humvee push and more.

“This experience has been great for us as a unit,” Dwyer said. “We do the computer-based trainings, but this training was a chance to apply what our Airmen learn online to the real world so they will be able to implement it during deployments.”

Airman 1st Class Carlton Mickles, 56th CES electrician, drags Tech. Sgt. Paul On, 56th CES energy programs specialist, to safety during a simulated ground attack at bivouac training in Gila Bend. Members of CES participated in a two-day mock deployment exercise focusing on force protection conditions and other essential learning tools.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Courtesy graphic

Fitness center gets Xtreme makeover

Courtesy graphic Above is an architectural rendering of the changes to the outside of the Luke Air Force Base Bryant Fitness Center. Renovations also include a remodel of most of the interior. The project will take place over t...
 
 

People — Air Force’s greatest asset

As I reflect on almost 25 years of military service, I find it easy to remember my assignments, the multiple jobs I’ve had and duties I have performed. I have served on four continents and for four presidents. Within that same time period, our nation has been in numerous campaigns ranging from operations Desert Storm...
 
 

Character, good or bad, will be passed on

Your character is who you are when no one is watching. At the same time, your character is who you are when everyone is watching. Your character is the sum of your morals and values and the quality of your character is of the utmost importance when leading others. In addition to your own values...
 

 
Senior Airman 
JAMES HENSLEY

History gets paint job

Senior AirmanJAMES HENSLEY James Bridges and Hayden Yager, civilian contractors, prepare the F-104C Starfighter static display for painting Aug. 12 in the Luke Air Force Base Airpark. The static displays in the airpark will be ...
 
 

News Briefs August 29, 2015

Base-wide exercise The 56th Fighter Wing will begin an active-shooter exercise between 8 and 10 a.m. Thursday. It is expected to continue throughout the day. The exercise will include military and local, county and state law enforcement, and fire departments. On and off-base residents should expect traffic disruptions, gate closures or delays, and interruption of...
 
 
Tech. Sgt. 
BARBARA PLANTE

944th Airmen live life as military couple

Tech. Sgt.BARBARA PLANTE Staff Sgt. Adam Jenkins and Senior Airman Cassandra Jenkins, 944th Logistics Readiness Squadron, are a dual-military couple and work together as maintainers in the refueling vehicle maintenance shop. St...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>