Defense

April 22, 2012

Army, Air Force conduct joint airdrop training

by SSgt. Kenneth A. Foss
Fort Drum, N.Y.
Army photograph by SSgt. Kenneth A. Foss
The 109th Airlift Wing, New York Air National Guard out of Stratton Air Base, Schenectady, assists 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion soldiers in the Drop Zone Safety Team Leader Course during a joint training operation, April 12, 2012, to certify them in receiving airdrops.

Airdrops provide the means to distribute vital equipment and supplies to soldiers in isolated locations with rough terrain, inadequate delivery routes and enemy activities.

The use of airdrops, as opposed to resupplying by way of ground transportation, can reduce the risk of roadside bombs and add to the Army’s flexibility on the battlefield.

The 10th Brigade Support Battalion organized a joint training exercise April 19 to certify 39 1st Brigade Combat Team Soldiers attending the Drop Zone Safety Team Leader Course. Soldiers spent the day at a drop zone, where they learned to safely coordinate and receive airdrops on the battlefield.

“Airborne operations and helicopter operations are still the fastest and most effective way to get Soldiers and equipment on the ground,” said SSgt. Richard Johnson, Pathfinder School instructor from Fort Benning, Ga.

Johnson added that they have to make sure they have leaders who can establish pickup zones in order to successfully make air drops.

Two C-130 Hercules airplanes from the 109th Airlift Wing, New York Air National Guard out of Stratton Air Base, Schenectady, dropped multiple training pallets, consisting of mostly water barrels and cinder blocks, some of the drops landing within meters of their targets.

“It’s important to do this kind of training because it’s what’s actually going on. A lot of places in Afghanistan, you can’t drive to them, so we refuel them by air drops,” said Maj. Daniel Corindia, air mobility liaison officer.

The airdrops simulate the same type of drops being piloted in current operations in Afghanistan today. The training will equip the “Warrior Brigade” Soldiers with the knowledge to conduct these operations themselves.

“You want to practice like you play,” Corindia said. “In Afghanistan, (with) some of the drop zones, if you’re off by 75 to 100 yards, these supplies go to our enemy as opposed to the troops that need them.”

Spec. Deshawn E. Pitts, 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion, mentioned that his unit didn’t have drop zone safety certified personnel and in the past had to rely on the expertise of other units, Army and Air Force, to assist them in receiving air drops.

Pitts added how important it was to use these techniques because it kept soldiers off the road, decreasing the chance of those Soldiers getting hit by an improvised explosive device.

“Predictability kills,” Johnson said. “Travel down a road, and you’re very predictable. You’re only going one of two directions. That makes it very easy for our enemy to place IEDs (improvised explosive devices) or (set up) ambushes that kill our Soldiers.”

Taking the road less traveled in the combat zone can result in receiving crucial assets, deterring the enemy’s observations of entry and exit routes and ultimately increasing the chance of Soldiers’ lives being saved.

 




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


 
 

 

Headlines November 21, 2014

News: Dempsey lays groundwork for larger 2016 defense budget - The top U.S. military official on Wednesday made the case for growing the base defense budget significantly over the $535 billion spending cap imposed by Congress for fiscal 2015.   Business: Boeing can bill $61 million that Pentagon withheld for months - The Pentagon withheld $60.5 million...
 
 

News Briefs November 21, 2014

Obama aide: U.S. should look at Ukraine military aid A senior aide of President Barack Obama says he believes the U.S. should consider giving Ukraine lethal, defensive military assistance to get Russia to think twice about its destabilizing behavior. Tony Blinken, the deputy national security adviser, cites serious violations by Russia of agreements not to...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Divine Cox

Kunsan AB hosts Exercise Max Thunder 14-2

Air Force photograph by SrA. Divine Cox A South Korean air force F-15 Strike Eagle lands Nov. 17, 2014, during Max Thunder 14-2 at Kunsan Air Base, South Korea. U.S. Air Force, Army, Marine Corps and Navy personnel and aircraft...
 

 
LM-facility

Lockheed Martin opens Surface Navy Innovation Center

Lockheed Martin has opened the Surface Navy Innovation Center in Moorestown, N.J., to support the development of new technologies for the U.S. Navy. The SNIC is a research, development and demonstration facility that brings tog...
 
 
raytheon-test

Raytheon successfully demonstrates integrated electronic warfare capabilities

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – Raytheon, in collaboration with the U.S. Navy, successfully demonstrated an end to end, first of its kind, integrated electronic attack system during flight tests at the Naval Air Weapons Station Chi...
 
 

Three bases identified as F-16 aggressor candidate bases

U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Joseph Swafford Jr. A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron lands at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, Oct. 6 during RED FLAG-Alaska 15-1. RF-A is a series of Pacific Air Forces commander-directed field training exercises for U.S. and partner nation...
 




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=""> <strike> <strong>