By Airman 1st Class Thomas Cox, 152nd Airlift Wing
/ Published June 24, 2021
Members of the Nevada and Hawaii Air National Guard search and extraction teams load a mannequin onto a backboard during a joint hazard assessment exercise in Kapolei, Hawaii, June 17, 2021. The Airmen had extracted the mannequin from a hillside during a simulated hurricane response. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman First Class Thomas Cox)
Members from the Nevada Air National Guard’s 152nd Medical Group (MDG) Detachment (DET) 1, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and High-Yield Explosive (CBRNE) Enhanced Response Force Package (CERFP) team, participated in a joint-service, multi-agency joint hazard assessment team (JHAT) exercise here, June 16-17, 2021.
Also participating, were members from the Hawaii Army and Air National Guard, California Army National Guard, Puerto Rico Air National Guard, Connecticut Army National Guard as well as the Honolulu Fire Department’s Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) team and contractors from Patriot Partners.
“The way we are pushing the envelope with this exercise is the JHAT concept,” said U.S. Army National Guard Maj. Sean Cripps, Hawaii National Guard CERFP JHAT exercise commander. “We are bringing together multiple resources and multiple technical specialties to better increase interoperability.”
Members of the search and extraction teams would canvas the exercise area for role-playing victims of a simulated hurricane. Once found and properly prioritized, the victims would be transported to the casualty collection point (CCP), where members in medical specialties would triage and provide proper medical care.
“This was very critical and valuable to us as it provides more of a real-world training environment for us,” said Maj. Michael Reed, 152nd MDG DET 1 commander. “We were able to incorporate both the military and civilian medical training that we possess.”
Participants were put through 9 different training scenarios throughout the 3-day exercise. These included scenarios such as collapsed structures, rolled over cars, CBRNE hazards as well as a wide area search that encompassed a mass casualty event.
“I think the National Guard as a whole over several years, is finding more and more the demand signal from first responders and our civilian entities,” said Cripps. “this is just another way for us to prepare and train to better serve our communities and first responders.”