DVIDS – News – Camp Williams Adds First Search and Extraction Training Site to Benefit Homeland, State, Regional and Nation Response Force

The Utah National Guard has a new training site for the Region VIII Homeland Response Force search and extraction team, as well as partner civilian urban search and rescue teams. Lt. Col. Erick R. Wiedmeier, commander of the 97th Troop Command and Region VIII Homeland Response Force Mission, held a grand dedication ceremony for the site of the collapsed structure on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 , at Army Garrison Camp Williams, Utah.

The ceremony consisted of a demonstration of CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear) Response Company (CRE) capabilities, a tour of the facility and an awards presentation. Guests from all over CRE were present. Distinguished visitors from the National Guard Bureau, Army Interagency Training and Education Center, Regions VIII, IX, and X HRFs, as well as Utah State delegates and civilians attended attended the inauguration.

Brig. Gen. Kurt Davis, director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Utah Army National Guard, remarked on the significance of the new training location. “This is going to be a great asset to training our rangers, but beyond that, we see this as a great training location for our local, state and regional urban search and rescue partners,” said Davis. “Furthermore, it will give us the opportunity to train jointly with our civilian partners, which will only improve our training, our capabilities and better prepare us to answer the call when this real disaster occurs.”

Wiedmeier added, “A large-scale earthquake along the Wasatch Front will cause significant damage to our urban infrastructure, requiring civilian and military search and rescue teams in Utah to be trained in rescue techniques. About 85% of Utah’s population lives in a fault zone. The Camp Williams collapsed structure site will allow partnerships between the Utah National Guard and our civilian counterparts to expand their readiness. Training together in a controlled environment before an actual catastrophic event will help keep urban search and rescue teams safe while saving lives in Utah.

Urban search and rescue is a vital and perishable skill set of Utah National Guard domestic operations. As one of only three Army-owned USAR training sites west of the Rocky Mountains, this site will not only allow the Utah National Guard Search and Extraction Team to train, but also to all National Guard search and extraction teams and civilian urban search and rescue. teams. This $377,000 site will also allow military and civilian agencies to train together and create the partnerships necessary for an “all-hazards” response.

“As seen with the condominium collapse in Surfside, Florida on June 24, 2021, and the candle factory leveled by a tornado in Mayfield, Kentucky on December 10, 2021, the speed at which urban search and rescue teams can respond and working together can be a matter of life and death,” said Major Kory Lund, deputy commander of the CBRN TF. “With the size of this site, multiple National Guard search and extraction teams can train together or with civilian urban search and rescue teams. This ability to train together will allow teams to share techniques and develop the skills and partnerships needed to work together and save lives when the time comes.”

The training facility design provides a realistic collapse condition with the highest level of safety protection. CSVS has multiple training pathways for teams to practice essential life skills during disaster response.

“The CSVS will enable the Region VIII HRF to be trained, relevant and ready to respond to natural or man-made disasters in our state, region and the West, saving lives and alleviating human suffering by providing a trained and ready staff. The training opportunities that CSVS will facilitate in developing and maintaining the effectiveness and efficiency of Region VIII HRF,” said Col. Tammy Manwaring, former 97th TC and Region VIII HRF Commander.

The project to finance, design and build CSVS took about four years. “I am overwhelmed with joy that we were able to bring this project to fruition. CSVS has been the most rewarding and challenging project I have ever worked on. It includes three years of hard work, dedication and pursuit relentless to complete construction,” said RHF Logistics NCO Master Sergeant Jeffry Yon.

This training site is one of many where the HRF can accomplish its mission and support the Federal Management Agency.

The National Guard provided 10 HRFs, one HRF for each of the FEMA Regions in 2010. The HRFs became fully operational in 2012. Utah is the host state for the FEMA Region VIII HRF. The HRF is a joint mission comprised of approximately 570 Army and Air National Guard personnel. Of the 570 employees, about 45 are full-time. The 97th TC, 19th Group Support Battalion, 65th Fires Artillery Brigade, 151st Mission Support Group, 151st Medical Detachment, and 204th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade are all contributing personnel to round out the roster. A New Mexico Air National Guard fatality search and recovery team is also included. The core of every HRF is chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive response capability, but they are equally ready and able to respond to any hazard.

HRFs manage a catastrophic event by providing command and control to multiple WMD civilian support teams and CBRNE enhanced response force sets. There are 57 ADM-CSTs and 17 CERFPs across the country. HRFs also provide coordination between federally controlled elements of the CBRNE response enterprise, including Defense CBRN Response Force command and control elements and follow-on forces.

The HRF mission requires the organization to respond within six to 12 hours when directed by the appropriate authority or governor’s consent to perform command and control; assistance to the wounded; search and retrieval; decontamination; medical triage and stabilization; and tracing and recovering fatalities to save lives and alleviate human suffering. In addition, the HRF must be able to hand over operations to civilian authorities and redeploy. The Adjutant General may employ the HRF to support a state’s CBRNE or all-hazards response under the direction of the governor or support another state’s response under the direction of a supported governor.
Search and Extraction are the hardest skills for HRF and CBRN TF. All M&E members must be Level I Rope Rescuer, Level I Confined Space Rescuer, and Level I Structural Collapse Rescuer certified by the National Fire Protection Association 1670. Prior to CSVS, search and extraction teams coordinated with Unified Fire Authority and Task Force 1 at Magna to use its facilities for the past ten years to conduct meaningful training.

“It has cost the Guard both time and money to use these facilities. With our collapsed structure site at Camp Williams, we can conduct M&E training whenever we want and stay close to the rest of the operations. CBRN TF and HRF tactics center locations,” said Lt. Col. Jeremy Stevenson, deputy commander of Region VIII HRF. “The primary function of the M&E element is to locate and dispose of casualties from assigned areas of responsibility (all in the hot zone (contaminated area)). are transported to casualty collection points to receive life support from Medical personnel attached to the M&E element are responsible for carrying out the initial triage of casualties rescued by the element.

The CSVS will provide a unique training site that will increase the readiness of military and civilian search and extraction/rescue teams.

“Our CSVS could become the premier CBRN TF training site in the western United States where CBRN TFs, CERFPs, DCRFs and civilian task forces from across the West can come to train,” Stevenson said. .







Date taken: 05.11.2022
Date posted: 17.05.2022 11:32
Story ID: 420895
Location: CAMP WILLIAMS, UT, USA





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