News: 181 IW CERF-P Evaluation brings guardsmen together to get the job done
Story by Senior Airman Kodie Egenolf
MUSCATATUCK URBAN TRAINING CENTER, Ind. – Bodies litter the ground, moans and cries for help echo in the smoke filled air amidst a city in ruins.
Airmen from the 181st Intelligence Wing, Chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high yield explosive (CBRNE) enhanced response force packages (CERF-P), Indiana Air National Guard participated in a five-day disaster response training and evaluation exercise here this week.
Approximately 200 Airmen and Soldiers from the Indiana National Guard joint 19th CERF-P showed up to practice disaster response training and prepare for an external evaluation.
“When a disaster happens many times the local authorities and abilities are overcome very quickly and then we can step in to help,” stated Air Force Col. Lisa Snyder, 181st IW Medical Group.
The external evaluation demonstrates the status of the joint 19th CERF-P preparation and ability to function as an operational task force in the state of Indiana.
“Training like this is important because anything can happen at any time,” stated Air Force Master Sgt. Shaun Fretwell, 181st IW Medical Group.
The training consists of analyzing disaster situations, deploying the right teams to handle the disaster, and ultimately caring for the wounded and casualties.
“It says a lot about the Guardsmen, Air and Army, to be able come together for an event like this, when throughout the month they do nothing like this in their civilian jobs.” stated Synder.
Indiana Guardsmen are repelling down elevator shafts, testing air and the environment for chemical activity, and most importantly practicing to save lives.
“We are always ready, we prepare every month during drill weekends, and during exercises such as this, to be ready in case something happens, and we make sure we are always ready so we can be there to assist civilians and our local communities,” stated Fretwell.
Training keeps guardsmen, resources, and abilities ready if a disaster hits.
“The mission here is staffed by traditional guardsmen, so these guard members come together from all over the state in the event that there is a natural disaster or a man-made terrorist event,” stated Fretwell.