Pacific Fleet Commander visits U.S. Army, Pacific Contingency Command Post

Exercise Balikatan
Story by Staff Sgt. Richard Colletta

Date: 11.08.2012
Posted: 11.14.2012 19:47
News ID: 97810
Pacific Fleet Commander visits U.S. Army, Pacific

FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii – Commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, Fleet Adm. Cecil Haney, visited the U.S. Army Pacific Contingency Command Post to get a first-hand look at their operations and capabilities, on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 7.

The CCP is a flexible and rapidly deployable unit that is specifically tailored to specialize in disasters and humanitarian crises in the Pacific Region. The CCP’s Humanitarian Assistance Survey Teams (HAST) deploy to disaster stricken areas to provide boots-on-ground, real-time assessments in disasters.

CCP soldiers illustrated some of these aspects to Haney via a mobile operations display at the CCP, consisting of a Deployable Rapid Assembly Shelter (DRASH), vehicles, communications equipment and soldiers, set up as they would be for a forward mission.

“It’s a great opportunity to get a glimpse of the CCP operations,” said Haney.

Haney spoke about the diversity of the Pacific Region and its “Ring of Fire”, an area in the Pacific known for earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and its potential for what he called, “spark plugs”, or incidents.

“It’s important to have flexible packages like the CCP,” said Haney. “Getting to see all this really expands my vision of how we’re able to respond to crisis.”

HAST teams are comprised of soldiers from across a spectrum of military occupational specialties. These teams are dedicated specifically to the CCP mission and are on call 24/7 to deploy and respond to disasters in the Pacific Region.

Soldiers of the CCP proudly displayed some of their special equipment including portable satellites, mobile video conferencing kits and All Terrain Vehicles. Together, all of these soldiers, skills and equipment translate into a wide range of capability, whether it’s in a crisis situation or on the battlefield.

Col. Thomas Kunk, Chief of Operations, USARPAC CCP, emphasized the unit’s unique capabilities.

“It’s the menu of skill sets we can bring to bear on whatever situation could be developing out here in the Pacific. That’s what makes the Contingency Command Post such a great resource for the Commanding General, USARPAC and PACOM,” said Kunk.

“The soldiers have stepped up, do the mission with a great deal of pride and are always ready to go if called upon.”