AL DHAFRA AIR BASE, United Arab Emirates --
Personnel assigned to 380th Air Expeditionary Wing participated in a base wide exercise here July 19-25. The exercise was designed to test Airmen on how to execute procedures in the event of an attack and recovery process.
All units within the base were tested on measures such as how to properly dawn the individual protective equipment (IPE), how fast they could get to designated bunkers and after-attack procedures such as par checks and accountability checklists.
Exercises of this nature take place with each rotation of personnel that enters the base. While they are designed to test readiness and preparedness, it’s also an opportunity for deployers to execute some of the techniques taught to them at home station and newly acquired skills while deployed here.
“Over the last month, we’ve trained over 70 new Wing Inspection Team (WIT) members who went out and captured all the data for this event,” said Lt. Col. Luke Baker, 380th AEW Inspector General. “It takes a lot of manpower to execute and document over 100 bunker drills, as well as capture all the data on our Emergency Mass Notifications System and Accountability procedures. It also takes a big lift from the entire inspection team to be able to gather that much data, then translate it into actionable info for the AEW to improve.”
With the IPE, individuals are asked to carry it with them wherever they go, depending on what uniform posture the base is in. The postures, along with the alarm condition, are maintained by each shop and announced over loudspeakers by the base command post.
Each bunker is equipped with necessary items to aid potentially injured personnel and material used to account for Airmen. The bunker commander, which is the highest ranking individuals, ensures accountability is correct and designated areas are secure from unexploded ordnance (UXO) objects.
Airmen were also monitored on their ability to generate missions and get aircraft airborne in the midst of an attack and recover the base’s operations. The exercise allows the wing to deliver combat airpower while defending coalition partners and the Gulf region, while also developing vital combat capabilities.
The Airmen’s efforts were not overlooked by leadership.
“It takes a great deal of time, creativity and coordination to ensure an exercise of this magnitude is effective,” said Brig. Gen. Larry Broadwell, 380th AEW commander. “The protection of those assigned to Al Dhafra will remain my top priority. They are our most treasured resource and are foundational to regional security and stability.”