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NEWS | Oct. 3, 2018

Transporters endure Fire and Ice challenge

By Senior Airman Derek Seifert 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

U.S. Army Soldiers assigned to the 7th Transportation Brigade and the 597th Transportation Brigade from Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, and Transportation Headquarters at Fort Lee, Virginia, participated in a Fire and Ice Challenge Sept. 28, 2018 at JBLE.


The three, eight-person teams were tested on their teamwork ability to finish three challenges with the fastest time.


During the first challenge, competitors correctly donned fire protection equipment including a respirator.


After donning the fire protection equipment, each team was timed on how quickly they could extinguish a fire and rescue a simulated casualty.


The last event of the challenge took place in the damage control simulator which represented a ship’s hull with pipes that had burst and a hole in a side wall.


“For our Army boat personnel, this is something they do on a regular basis since every vessel needs a fire team and they need to know how to stop leaks,” said U.S Army Capt. Morgan Carter, 690th Rapid Port Opening Element, 832nd Trans. Btn., 597th Trans. Bde., logistics officer. “It was a good team building exercise and gave us perspective to what some of the enlisted transporters go through.”


Normally, officers coordinate and oversee the training the enlisted Soldiers participate in, limiting officer opportunities to participate in or see this training hands-on.


“The hardest part for me was the time constraints--it is pretty unbelievable that people are required to put on all the fire equipment on in two minutes,” Carter said. “Also, just getting used to the environment--you need to have a good take on your bearings because the only way out was to find the fire hose and hopefully follow it in the right direction.”


The Fire and Ice Challenge provided transportation officers and senior leadership the opportunity to experience potentially life-saving training that normally, only boat crew Soldiers who have been identified as part of their ships fire team go through.


“I took a huge lesson in teamwork away from this challenge,” said 1st Lt. Clay Confer, 690th RPOE, 832nd Trans. Btn., 597th Trans. Bde. Distribution Platoon platoon leader. “You can always learn from anyone; it doesn’t matter if it’s a brand-new Soldier straight from Advanced Individual Training or the colonel.”


At the end of the challenge, the 7th Transportation Brigade was named the victors over the Transportation Headquarters team and the 597th Trans. Bde.