Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow, Calif., will be receiving additional military police Marines in October to augment the Marine Corps Police Department, according to Capt. Mark Machado, police chief and provost marshal, Marine Corps Police Department, MCLB Barstow. That means some changes have to be made with the Security and Emergency Services Division.
“The changes we’re making fall under the Commandant’s Guidance for Law Enforcement Divestment,” said Machado.
“Two military police battalions, one from Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton and one from Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, are being broken down, or divested, and those Marines are being sent to other bases with the most need,” he explained.
Machado said that means to gain the extra space needed at the police department to handle the influx of Marines, moves had to be made to free up space in Bldg. 236.
“Currently, Warehouse 3 is the headquarters and training facility for our Special Response Team,” he said. “Moving those offices into Bldg. 236 gives us more cohesion of forces and creates a better communications environment.”
Warehouse 3 can then be used for its original mission of storage, he said.
“Seeing the new Marines at the gate and out on patrol will also create a better impression of what a Marine Corps Base should be,” said Machado.
There were three administrative offices for the Marine Corps Fire and Emergency Services Department in Bldg. 236. Those have been moved to the west end of Bldg. 196. That space originally contained the offices of the U.S. Navy Regional Officer in Charge of Construction, ROICC.
“Having all of our administrative and other personnel in one building is a very good thing for the Fire Department,” said Paul Purdy, fire chief, Marine Corps Fire and Emergency Services Department.
“We have much more room for our training missions now, plus room to keep all of our equipment in one place,” he continued.
“The move is only temporary, though, because once building 322 is modified to our specific needs, all of our offices and personnel will be moved there,” explained Purdy.
He said the contract for the modification and build-out of 322 has been awarded and construction begins in the fall of 2021.
“That building has very large bays for our modern fire trucks and equipment and plenty of room for our administrative offices as well,” he said.
The current fire station located near the Maj. Gen. James L. Day Conference Center aboard the Nebo Annex of MCLB Barstow, will be demolished.
“That fire station was built decades ago, when fire trucks and other equipment were smaller,” said Purdy. “It’s not big enough for today’s larger equipment. Once building 322 is completed, it will become the fire station for the Nebo base.”
The move of offices also affected the Base Safety Office.
“We welcome the move,” said Ray Aguilar, Base Safety manager. “We were in Bldg. 236 for 18 years, but the move to the east end of building 196 gives us much more room to provide more training and storage space.”
Currently there is a portable Wet-Bulb Globe Temperature station in front of the new offices of Base Safety.
“A permanent WGBT station is in the works,” said Aguilar. “The WBGT information is important in determining what the ambient temperature is. That reading is then used to tell us what heat flags we post at the front gate of both the Nebo base and Yermo annex of MCLB Barstow.”
The heat flag system is used to inform base personnel how long to spend on outdoor activities in hot weather.
“The move of the SES offices and Base Safety frees up more room, consolidates the police and fire forces, removes an outdated building built in the 1950’s that didn’t meet current mission standards, and brings more personnel aboard to bring our active duty contingent up to just over 100 Marines,” said Lt. Col. Alfredo Romero, executive officer, MCLB Barstow. “It’s a win-win situation for everyone concerned.”