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    Materiel enterprise continues fight against COVID-19

    Sierra Army Depot forklift driver moving PPE

    Photo By Randy Tisor | A worker moves a pallet of personal protective equipment in a Sierra Army Depot...... read more read more



    Story by William King 

    U.S. Army Materiel Command   

    Editor's Note: This is the first article in a four-part series on Army Materiel Command's support to the whole-of-government response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This installment is focused on support to civil authorities.

    (REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala.) – The Army Materiel Command enterprise continues its fight against COVID-19 and since April has made significant contributions in providing essential support to civil authorities through the Army and Department of Defense’s whole-of-government response to the virus. Support includes contracting, communications, storage and movement of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and deployment support for medical units and personnel, among other functions.

    U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command’s Sierra Army Depot in California is directly contributing to the Army’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in multiple ways, including the reception, storage and shipment of test kits and PPE. In late April, the depot began receiving millions of pieces of equipment, including gowns, surgical masks and face coverings, shoe covers, surgical caps, gloves, eye protection, face shields, hand sanitizer, thermometers, collection kits and test kits.

    As of mid-July, Sierra has made more than 700 shipments totaling nearly 1.5 million personal protective items to Army units and Military Treatment Facilities worldwide.

    “These shipments are a mixture of protective equipment and test kits put together to meet customer needs and requirements,” said Jason Tong, Sierra Army Depot Supply Support Activity director. “We continue to receive, store and ship PPE across the world in support of the effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 amongst our military forces.”

    The Army Contracting Command mobilized teams as part of DoD’s support to FEMA in 14 locations around the country, including New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Seattle, Dallas and other cities. The Mission and Installation Contracting Command’s senior contracting officer for U.S. Army North oversaw the direct award of 54 contracts valued in excess of $30 million and is now closely monitoring the proper close out of these contracts. The MICC has completed to date 5,640 contracting and Government Purchase Card actions valued at more than $53.4 million toward COVID-19 operations across the U.S.

    Communications are critical to coordinating efforts and mission command of forces deployed across the country. The U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command, in coordination with Program Executive Office Command, Control, Communications-Tactical, established a 24-hour support center to assist U.S. Army North and associated task forces fighting the pandemic. Additionally, CECOM supported an unplanned Satellite Transportable Terminal requirement for the 67th Expeditionary Signal Battalion deploying to New York.

    CECOM has provided communications and electronics expertise to numerous emergency COVID-19 requests from various Army organizations, said Maj. Gen. Mitchell Kilgo, CECOM commanding general.

    “On the battlefield, communications are the critical enabler of the two other core functions: shooting and moving. In the fight against COVID-19, they were equally important in empowering National Guard and U.S. Army North units to deliver life-saving medical support and supplies where the nation's civil authorities needed it most,” said Kilgo. “I am extremely proud of our entire team.”

    The Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command coordinated more than 200 line-haul movements of critical medical units, equipment and supplies in the last two months in support of COVID-19 response. Additionally, SDDC executed deployment and distribution operations at strategic seaports in the U.S. and overseas while also supporting sustainment requirements, often exceeding 1,000 supply containers per week, for the Defense Logistics Agency, Army and Air Force Exchange Service and Defense Commissary Agency.

    “I am exceptionally proud of the incredible work the Surface Warrior workforce is accomplishing in our nation’s fight against COVID-19,” said Brig. Gen. Heidi J. Hoyle, SDDC commanding general. “Operations are more difficult during the pandemic because we must closely interact with the military units, commercial and industry partners and communities needed to accomplish the mission. We can’t shelter in place.”

    AMC is also working to provide COVID-19 supplies and materials to our allies and partners overseas. The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command has one Foreign Military Sales case that includes COVID-19-related prevention materials for the Afghanistan National Army. Supplies include masks and surgical gowns, but delivery will be based on a long-term production schedule.



    Date Taken: 07.28.2020
    Date Posted: 07.28.2020 16:17
    Story ID: 374759

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