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NMCB 5 Corpsman and Combat Lifesavers Train, Part of "Operation Bearing Duel"

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070822-11
Release Date: 8/22/2007 2:56:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Palmer Pinckney II, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 5 Public Affairs

FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, Calif. (NNS) -- The medical department and Combat Lifesavers with U.S. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5 tested their capabilities during a Mass Casualty Drill (MCD). This drill is one of several simulations being conducted as part of Operation Bearing Duel (OBD) 6-07, Aug. 13 to Sept. 3.

During the MCD, a simulated terrorist attack injured several Navy Seabees conducting heavy equipment operations at Logistical Support Area (LSA) Lion, Fort Hunter Liggett. Using bandages to imitate injuries sustained in the simulated attack, NMCB 5 Seabees were spread out over a small area of the LSA as Combat Life Savers (CLS) and emergency stretcher bearers responded. CLS was the first to respond providing immediate treatment to the wounded Seabees. The injured were evacuated to the Battalion Aid Station and immediately cared for by NMCB 5 medical personnel.

“The level of confusion is mind-boggling, but after a short while you get over that and get to the care of patients,” said Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Stephanie J. Messina, NMCB 5 preventive medical technician. “We have to be prepared for any medical situation that arises and this type of training improves our response.”

The drill was evaluated by instructors, representing 31st Seabee Readiness Group as the certifying authority for Naval Construction Forces battalions. NMCB 5 medical team was graded on the levels of care given to the casualties, and how quickly and effectively the patients were moved from one location of care to the next.

OBD 6-07 is designed to prepare and certify the battalion as ready for tasking to areas outside the continental United States per the Fleet Response Plan (FRP). The FRP creates a more deployment-capable and responsive Navy.

NMCB 5 is preparing for their next deployment to Okinawa, Japan and several other locations throughout Asia.

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