Soldiers Learn How To Receive Supplies Dropped From Planes
When you need to get supplies and people somewhere in Afghanistan, often the safest way is to drop them from the sky.
That's just what joint training between the Army and the Air Force on Fort Drum was all about.
An Air National Guard unit out of Schenectedy practiced dropping loads out of C-130 cargo planes. While on the ground, soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team special troops battalion were learning to set up drop zones to receive those deliveries.
The training bundles are filled with water or concrete, but overseas the same skills will be used to move everything from beans to water and bottles to bullets.
Getting it right when they deploy to Afghanistan will be critical.
"Predictability kills," said Staff Sgt. Richard Jackson. "You travel down a road, you're very predictable. You can only go one of two directions. So, it makes it very easy for our enemy to emplace IEDs or ambushes which kill our soldiers."
"You want to practice like you play," said air mobility liaison officer Daniel Corinda. "In Afghanistan, some of the drop zones, if you're off by 75 to 100 yards, these supplies go to our enemy as opposed to the troops that need them.
Although there's no exact time table for when they'll need the skills, 39 1st Brigade soldiers have now completed the training and they'll be ready whenever they're deployed to Afghanistan again.