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NEWS | Feb. 25, 2022

JBLE Personnel stay mission ready with CBRN Training

By Airman 1st Class Chloe Shanes & Airman Mikaela Smith 633d Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Personnel from across Langley came together for a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear exercise on Feb. 17, 2022, at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va.

“The CBRN exercise we participated in today is one of many annual readiness training requirements,” said U.S. Army Col. Harry Hung, 633d Air Base Wing vice commander. “In this particular case, we wanted to train a scenario with our US Postal Service and to test out a new command and control platform and its ability to integrate with existing systems that are used by our crisis action team members, emergency operation center personnel and first responders on the ground.”

In addition to improving the integration of command and control functions, exercises like these aim to prepare personnel to survive in a compromised environment and mitigate the effects of a CBRN attack.

“The training is important because Airmen [need to] have the knowledge to protect themselves in the event of a CBRN attack, especially in today’s world and the CBRN capabilities of different adversaries,” said Tech. Sgt. Lauren Yancey, 633d Civil Engineer Squadron, Emergency Management noncommissioned officer in charge.

A typical CBRN training is broken up into three parts. The first is CBRN hazards, personal protective equipment, and attack response. This portion focuses on CBRN hazards such as chemical or biological agents, and radiation effects. Second, students are led through an inspection of their M50 gas mask and protective gear, followed by instruction regarding preparedness, response and recovery attack actions. Finally, students perform individual and team performance-based objectives that are evaluated by the instructor.

“If we did not train on this, a lot of people could get hurt,” said Senior Airman Dexter Poole, 633d Civil Engineer Squadron emergency manager. “It is vital that we practice the things that we do downrange because if those skills are forgotten, it could cost someone their life.”

During the evaluation of the CBRN exercise, the 633d Fire Department, 633d Emergency Medical Services, 633d Civil Engineering, and 633d Security Forces showed up to a staged “crime scene”, in which members performed under pressure and executed multiple safety protocols and procedures. Once the exercise concluded, members were briefed on their performance as a team, as well as given individual pointers to adjust in the situation of a real-world event.

“I’m proud of our team and how well they performed, accomplishing all the objectives set out for us,” Hung said. “We will continue to train in scenarios such as these to ensure the safety of our Airmen, Soldiers, mission partners and families who call JBLE home.”