News: Indiana air crews train on water bucket drops
Story by 1st Lt. Tyler Mitchell
CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. – Soldiers from the 38th Combat Aviation Brigade trained with first responder agencies from across the state in an event that focused on interagency coordination with the Indiana Department of Homeland Security. “We’re not just doing the fire fighting aspect of it, we’re doing different scenarios and taking advantage of the opportunity to have the guard train with us,” said Bill Brown, District 5 Task Force coordinator of the Indiana Department of Homeland Security
Indiana Task Force One was also present with Brown for training with new air to ground communications equipment. They are one of 28 federal urban search and rescue teams in the country. Brown was focused on finding out the interoperability of the new communications system between the Task Force One ground crew and the UH-60 Black Hawks.
Thirty-two people attended the training that consisted of classroom instruction; scenarios and an after action review, to discuss what could make training stronger for the next class. The Bambi Bucket model used by the aviation soldiers for this training held 660 gallons of water. The Bambi Bucket is used in 110 countries with it’s largest version capable of holding 2,600 gallons.
During scenario training, soldiers would pick up water from a pond at one end, then circle around and drop it at another. Fluorescent panels were also used to signal drop zones. The various departments would communicate on the ground with the pilots of the UH-60 Black Hawk and coordinate pickup locations and drop zones.
“One of our goals was to get aviators from full time staff trained and proficient and reacquainted with water bucket training,” said Chief Warrant Officer 4 Scott Osborne, an instructor pilot from HHC 2-238th GSAB. “If we are going to do this training anyway, its good to bring on other people and really be able to bring everyone together.”