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Seabees Build Up Berm At Kuwait Naval Base

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS110721-07

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Peter D. Lawlor

KUWAIT NAVAL BASE, Kuwait (NNS) -- Seabees assigned to Commander, Task Group (CTG) 56.2, helped improve the readiness of joint forces training at Kuwait Naval Base by reinforcing a sand berm, making it safe to conduct weapons training at the 300-meter range, July 5-10.

The Seabees used two large bulldozers to push tons of sand up the berm and increase its height an additional 12 feet to protect buildings and personnel located behind the berm from any potential stray munitions.

Chief Interior Communications Electrician Jason Grey, a weapons and tactical trainer with Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron 3 at Camp Patriot in Kuwait, said the berm was built in 2003. Since then, windstorms and erosion had reduced the berm's overall size and effectiveness.

Grey said without the range at Kuwait Naval Base, weapons training had to be conducted two hours north, which greatly impaired readiness and put a strain on logistics for both Kuwaiti and U.S. joint forces training in the area.

Grey worked with Sailors, Soldiers and Coast Guardsmen at Camp Patriot and assembled a team to help get the range up and operational.

"Our team got together and cleaned up the place," Grey said. "We hauled away about four tons of debris and trash. We also rebuilt all of the targets."

Army Master Sgt. Anthony Saladine, assigned to Task Force 1/182nd Field Artillery, Michigan Army National Guard, said carpenters in his unit at Camp Patriot built the new target stands for the Kuwaiti range to support the range improvement effort.

"Part of our mission here at Kuwait Naval Base is host nation relations," Saladine said. "So anything that we can do to help the Kuwaitis out, as far as range operations go, benefits us because not only are we helping them, but they also allow us to use the range."

Grey and Saladine had the manpower to haul away debris from the range and build new target stands, but only the Seabees could build up the berm to get the range back up and operational.

Equipment Operator Constructionman Jacob Osburn said he loves his job and was glad to support the project, but it was not without its challenges.

"To get this berm another 12 feet high took a lot of dirt," said Osburn. "The amount of space we had and the amount of dirt we had was limiting our ability to get that berm higher."

However, Osburn and his fellow Seabees appreciated the challenge, so they took it in stride.

"The more challenging the better," Osburn said. "The more stick time you get (driving the bulldozer), the better you become at it."

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