News: Waterfront Mission supports Joint Force Operation
Story by 1st Lt. Ryan Pace
by 1st Lt. Ryan J. Pace
143rd Transportation Command PAO
Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen work together in joint mission at port to load vital cargo onto Motor Vessel Strong Virginian.
During and after the operation, the joint components of the mission combined their resources to safely and efficiently discharge the containers of theater ammunition stocks for support to other areas of operations. In addition, a Transportation Brigade was also able to perform patrol duties of securing the port during effort.
"The mission is to get the cargo loaded quickly and safely," said Petty Officer Kenneth Barnett of Navel Logisitics Support Group – Expeditionary, Port Group Delta.
The four-day mission was conducted in half the time of a normal load, while successfully uploading over 200 containers of equipment into hatches awaiting shipment to another port.
The discharge of the MV Virginian is a perfect example of the joint environment we currently operate under during military operations.
The operation included support from almost all service components including Air Force , Army, Navy, Coast Guard, Department of the Army civilian workers, third country national contractors, coalition forces and the Kuwait Navy.
During the last two months, the 595th Operations Team at Kuwait Naval Base, led by U.S. Army Soldiers, Maj. John Cubbedge, Maj. Derrick Charles and Cpt. Yolanda Ellerbee, planned, coordinated, and conducted a seamless discharge and retrograde operation of the hazardous cargo to
"It is Supervisory; Sharing the responsibility and working as a team." said SKC Howard Alsbrook, also of the Navy LSG-Port Group Delta
From the time the ship arrived in Kuwait Territorial Waters, to the time it arrived on berth and discharge started and upload ended then vessel sailed, there has been no injuries and no delays in operation.
Truly a testament to the amount of planning and rehearsals, the 595th Transportation Battalion - Operations Team was a key element made mandatory during Phase One Planning for the mission.
To make this mission successful, the operations officer and the planner had to coordinate and integrate 19 separate units and organizations comprised of DA Civilians, Local national contractors, Coalition Forces, and 4 of the 5 Military Service Organizations.
The ability of the vessel team chiefs and the operations officer to multi task in a dynamic environment allowed them to keep a constant flow to the operations while maintaining a sharp focus on the ammunition mission. This "can do" attitude was successful in ensuring 321 containers were discharged and 146 containers were retrograded without experiencing any accidents and/or heat casualties. The average temperature during this operation was 112F.