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Marines Rehearse Critical EOD, CBRN Joint Training

Image credit: Janessa Pon

Camp Hansen in Okinawa was the site of a recent rehearsal involving marines from the 9th Engineer Support Battalion and Marine Logistics Group Headquarters Regiment, 3rd MLG, III Marine Expeditionary Force.

The explosive ordnance disposal technicians (EOD) and chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear (CBRN) defense specialists performed leak, seal, package and decontamination procedures April 21.

Before the training began, Marines activated packages of chlorobenzylidene malonitrile, also known as tear gas, in the dark, foggy chamber to simulate the emission of harmful gases.

The Marines divided into teams of four and entered the gas chamber in pairs, the first pair performing initial inspection procedures and setting up equipment for packaging, containment and transportation of the leaking ordnance and equipment to prevent cross-contamination.

The second pair of Marines followed behind and sealed the leaking ordnance with packing materials to avoid further contamination and placed the package in a container for safe transport.

“It’s all about teaching readiness,” said Lance Cpl. River J. Garza, a CBRN defense specialist with MLG Headquarters Regiment. “We need repetition to instill confidence in the safety (equipment) as well as the procedures so we can keep everyone safe.”

The Marine EOD technicians and CBRN defense specialists came together to train, reinforcing individual and unit-level readiness for terrorist situations involving CBRN-related threats.

After the movement through the gas chamber, the technicians and defense specialists stepped carefully through the decontamination line to properly remove protective equipment and ensure contaminants were not carried outside the affected area.

The training familiarizes Marines with the correct safety measures that must be taken following contact with a hazardous material spill.

“(CBRN) is here to ensure Marines are familiar with the decontamination process as well as the leak, seal, package process,” said Garza. “We have to be sure the contaminants we come in contact with during the (process) are not carried outside of the affected area.”

Article adapted from original by Janessa Pon, USMC.

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