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NMCB 4 Seabees Transform Lakes of Mud into Gravel Parking Lots

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070509-06
Release Date: 5/9/2007 2:24:00 PM

By Lt. Peter N. Ott, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 4 Public Affairs

CAMP RAMADI, Iraq (NNS) -- What had been large lakes of mud due to a recent rainstorm are now gravel parking lots for the Camp Ramadi dining facility and exchange thanks to the Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 4, who completed the work April 26.

“It feels awesome to actually get to do my rate,” said Equipment Operator 3rd Class Stephen Dixon, who was able to put his skills to the test after NMCB 4’s 10-month homeport in Port Hueneme, Calif. “I’m ready to get to work.”

Five Seabees graded the parking lots. A slope was made between the lots to create a drainage ditch which would move running water into collection ponds dug out at either end. Two culverts were placed to assist with the runoff. Before placing the gravel, the crew, with help from the Army’s 1-3 Brigade Troops Battalion (1-3 BTB), rolled barriers across the lots to keep the gravel from sinking into the mud during future rainstorms.

As dump trucks full of gravel rolled in, NMCB 4’s Seabees worked quickly to spread the gravel and complete the project under the watchful eyes of Army.

“It’s always a pleasure working with the Seabees. They work too hard for their own good,” said Army Staff Sgt. Julian Nicholson, of 1-3 BTB, who oversees all projects on base for the Camp Ramadi Mayor’s Cell. “NMCB 4 has come on board ready to roll. We’re glad to have their help.”

A line of humvees sat parked on the gravel the day after NMCB 4 finished the lots, and Soldiers and Marines walked to and from the dining facility and exchange without worrying about keeping the mud off their boots. Even though their deployment is just beginning, NMCB 4 is already improving the quality of life at Camp Ramadi.

“I’m glad to be out of homeport and actually doing my job," said Equipment Operator Constructionman Cordello Jordan, who helped complete the project for NMCB 4. “This is what I get paid for. I’m loving it!”

Including NMCB 4, there are nearly 1,100 Sailors and Marines supporting critical construction efforts in the Al Anbar province of Iraq.

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