‘Devil’ STB Soldiers conduct CBRNE training
Soldiers with HHC, 1st ABCT show signs of the effects of tear gas during the unit’s CBRNE training Feb. 11 at the gas chamber at Fort Riley. Photo by: Sgt. Kerry Lawson, 1ST ABCT.
Story by: Sgt. Kerry Lawson
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Soldiers with the Special Troops Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division marched eight-and-a-half miles to conduct chemical, biological, radiological nuclear and explosive training Feb. 11 at a gas chamber at Fort Riley.
The training helps Soldiers build confidence in their chemical equipment and themselves.
"CBRNE training is something we, as a fighting force, have lost sight on," said 1st Sgt. Tony Reese, senior noncommissioned officer, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, STB.
The training gave Soldiers familiarity with the M40 protective mask and prepared them for future training, where they will become familiar with the joint lightweight integrated suit technology, Reese said. They will learn how to read M8 and M9 detection papers and determine what the colors shown mean, as well as learn the levels of mission-oriented protective posture.
"This training is to get us ahead of the game for the CBRNE training this summer," Reese said. "We will be going through the chamber again, but this time, it will be at MOPP level four, as well as setting up a decontamination site for personnel."
Chemical training is like weapons training, in that it is a perishable skill, Reese said. Chemical training is often a neglected area, said Capt. Bryan Sanders, HHC commander.
"Similar to a line company that deals a lot with weapons training, if a Soldier does not participate in a lot of chemical training compared to a Soldier who does, you will be able to see the difference between the two," Sanders said.
Repetitiveness in these matters is important, he said. Take those same two Soldiers and tell them to don their protective masks, and one would see the time difference, Sanders said. The same would apply to putting on the entire JLIST suit with the protective mask and gloves.
Sgt. Vernon Lautenschlager, the battalion's CBRNE NCO, was present during the training to ensure there were no safety issues within the gas chamber. If Soldiers have problems with their masks and start breathing too much tear gas, they need to be taken out of the chamber quickly, Lautenschlager said. If this happens, medics are available to treat any Soldier who needs assistance.