News: Marines train for deployment contingencies
Story by Cpl. Kenneth Jasik
MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. – For coalition forces transporting supplies to service members in Afghanistan, the road to the forward operating base can be a long one filled with a variety of dangers including improvised explosive devices and ambushes.
In order to prepare for the obstacles they may face during combat logistics patrols while deployed to Afghanistan, Marines and sailors with Combat Logistics Battalion 1, Combat Logistics Regiment 1, 1st Marine Logistics Group, conducted a simulated combat logistics patrol here, July 27.
During the scenario, Marines found a simulated IED and called explosive ordinance disposal personnel to render it safe. A short while later, they were ambushed and the security trucks shot suppressing fire while the other vehicles moved to safety. When they were almost done, a simulated IED detonated and the Marines called for a medical evacuation of the notional casualties of the blast.
“If this actually happens in combat we know how to react and what steps to take,” said Pfc. Jesus Vargas, combat engineer, Alpha Company, CLB-1, 20, Dallas. “The variety of things we did really helps out because you don’t know what to expect out there.”
The Marines and sailors knew what to do in each part of their simulated combat logistics patrol because they had a plan, and they let each other know what was going on.
“I heard good communication,” said Fonseca, 19, from San Antonio. “Everybody knew their jobs, everybody knew what was going on, gunners knew what to do, everyone did pretty good.”
The training evolution helped build the Marines’ confidence that they would be ready to handle the unexpected.
“I think it helped me realize that I knew more than I thought I knew,” said Lance Cpl. Will H. Fonseca, combat engineer, Alpha Company, CLB-1, CLR-1, 1st MLG. “It helped me realize that once you go outside the wire, anything can happen and you need to be prepared for the worst.”