180FW security forces train at Battle Creek
By Staff Sgt. John Wilkes, 180th Fighter Wing
/ Published August 05, 2018
Battle Creek, Michigan -- “FIRE!” said the voice. Within seconds, the audible crack of Airmen hitting their targets rang out.
The Security Forces Squadron of the 180th Fighter Wing, Ohio Air National Guard, conducted live-fire training on multiple weapons systems at Fort Custer Training Center in Battle Creek, Michigan from April 16-20, 2018.
Airmen assigned to 180FW Security Forces conducted training on the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, M240-B medium machine gun, M203 under-barrel grenade launcher and the M4 carbine. Airmen also took part in Humvee Egress Assistance Training and land navigation fundamentals.
“Training events like this allow us to satisfy annual training requirements while building skillsets related to our core functions, such as base security and law enforcement,” said Maj. Diana Sluhan, operations officer assigned to the 180FW Security Forces Squadron.
Throughout the training event, Airmen fired thousands of rounds through various weapons systems.
“It was a great experience,” said Senior Airman Ronald Callahan, a security forces technician assigned to the 180FW. “The scenarios were more realistic than I expected.”
Following live-fire training, Airmen took aim, using more than 15 different weapons, on the EST 2000, a computerized weapon training system allowing them to operate as a squad in different realistic scenarios that could be encountered in various environments at home and abroad.
“The EST 2000 is a very valuable tool, as it allows us to simulate a wide variety of training scenarios from domestic violence and active shooter to combat operations,” said Sluhan.
According to Staff Sgt. Armando Vargas, a security forces specialist with the 180FW, the simulator is able to produce realistic, controllable scenarios enabling Airmen to communicate and act as a cohesive unit. Presenting these realistic scenarios allows decision making and teamwork to be honed and refined.
Data is collected throughout the simulations, allowing instructors to accurately address and remedy shooting techniques such as trigger pull, aiming and breathing.
“If an Airman is not executing the proper fundamentals of shooting, we are able to correct that in a safe environment,” Vargas said.
Airmen also took part in Humvee Egress Assistance Training, during which, a Humvee is rotated upside down to simulate a vehicle rollover, allowing Airmen to practice emergency exit drills.
According to Sluhan, it is important to maintain and increase proficiency in these areas to ensure Airmen are capable of operating effectively and efficiently, whether at home or overseas.
“This has been a very valuable training period,” said Sluhan. “Fort Custer provides us access to training resources not available at our home base and it is not far away, which maximizes our training period so we can get the best training possible.”
The 180FW and Air National Guard conduct daily training, in realistic environments, under realistic circumstances to ensure our force maintains the highest levels of proficiency and readiness to answer the call to duty.