News: Force Protection Increased at District Center
Story by Sgt. Jessica Dahlberg
By Sgt. Jessica R. Dahlberg
3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division
BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan - The Quargehay District Center has come under two attacks since April, and recently a criminal investigative division police officer was killed while searching the culverts surrounding the center for improvised explosive devices.
However, work is being done to strengthen the area around the district center from these attacks, such as Hesco Barriers and the construction of a guard tower.
The district center is the hub of government activity for the Quargehay District, with the Afghanistan national police station and a governor's building being located there.
The ANP have continued to try to reinforce the district center with Hesco Barriers, but some spots of the center are still vulnerable to attack.
That is where the help of the 527th Military Police Company, out of Giessen, Germany, Methar Lam police mentoring team and Dyncorp workers come in to play. These three components work together to help train the ANP, and on Aug. 1, 2008, they brought building supplies for additional Hesco Barriers to help the police fortify the district center.
"The two recent attacks on the district center are the reason the chief of police requested the Hesco Barriers," Capt. Englebert Roy, with the Methar Lam PMT, said.
The three components brought numerous large and small Hesco Barriers.
"The police are going to build the barriers themselves and then a contractor will come and fill the barriers with sand," Sgt. Michael Butts, 3rd squad leader of the 527th MP Company, said.
The chief of police contacted a contractor on the same day they were delivered to come and estimate how much it will cost to tightly pack the barriers with sand.
Along with the barriers, construction of a guard tower is going to begin in order to help alleviate oncoming attack.
The tower is going to be a huge improvement for the police to conduct perimeter operations, Roy said.
To drive the point home of the susceptibility of the district center to attacks, two unexploded ordinances were recently found around the district center buildings.
Fortifying the district center has been an ongoing process, Roy said. With the new wall of Hesco Barriers and the guard tower, the police will be able to fight back from a more secure position than they had previously.