Pacific Airmen help Soldiers improve cargo, airlift operations

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Theanne Herrmann
  • 624th Regional Support Group
JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii – Pacific Airmen provided the Army Reserve’s 3302nd Mobilization Support Battalion from Fort Shafter the opportunity to refine and streamline their pre-deployment process by conducting a joint airlift inspection training event here May 5.

The event was a collaborative effort to build working relationships between the Army Reserve, Air Force Reserve and Hawaii Air National Guard to improve proficiencies, and teach participants how to inspect vehicles and cargo for airlift operations.

“It’s our Airmen’s responsibility to ensure everything they load onto an aircraft is suitable to fly from point A to point B,” said Air Force Capt. Jeremy Rhode, quality assurance manager for the 48th Aerial Port Squadron. “The joint inspection is a lengthy and tedious process to ensure all of the equipment is clean, clear of hazardous materials, chemicals and ammunition.”

The training event helped refine individual skills necessary to ensure cargo is properly prepared for airlift operations, and to prevent delays in the movement of cargo and personnel during real-world contingencies.

To help make the training as realistic as possible the Army Reserve brought their own passenger bags, two Humvees and a 25K Halvorsen loader. Using their own equipment helped the participants learn how the Air Force evaluates their Army-specific equipment before it is ready to be transported via military aircraft.

“After observing this inspection process we have a better understanding and appreciation for how the Air Force operates,” said Army Maj. James Marquez, 3302nd MSB. “It’s a meticulous process to ensure these loads are certified and ready.”

The lessons learned from this event will be used to prepare units the 3302nd supports through the mobilization process.

“We have information for our movement officers so they know what needs to be done prior to their arrival to the aerial port,” said Marquez. “We will go back and teach our other units in the Army Reserve what it takes, so when they get down here the process of getting their equipment and personal loaded and the aircraft up in the air goes a lot smoother. We’re all on the same team, it’s a win-win for everyone involved.”