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KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- The 8th Fighter Wing conducted a base exercise here October 5 to 9, testing everything from self-aid and buddy care procedures to operating in a chemically contaminated environment. The exercise was facilitated by personnel from the 8th FW Inspector General's Office.
The wing shuts down everything and everyone transitions into a simulated real-world contingency environment.
"In a wartime situation, it's very fluid and chaotic at times," said Lt. Col. Kenneth Mercier, 8th Force Support Squadron commander. "It's not going to be a bright and shiny day. You'll have missiles, unidentified ordinance and all kinds of mayhem going on. When you practice that, then you're ready for the real-world situation."
Wing Inspection Team members prepared scenarios that would be relevant to Kunsan Air Base and then instated a 5 day long training exercise that would allow the base to practice chemical warfare safety and real world situations.
"We are trying to simulate to the maximum extent possible what we think we would encounter if we went to war tomorrow or if we had to fight tonight" said Lt. Col. Scott Seigfried, 8th Fighter Wing Inspector General. "We take a look at the enemies capabilities and what they can bring to the fight and simulate with as much risk mitigation as possible the actual conditions that Airmen would encounter at Kunsan Air Base making sure we're prepared to survive those situations so we can be prepared to fight tonight."
The WIT's scenarios included a full spectrum of events, keeping the wing fully engaged around the clock as maintainers launched aircraft, security forces responded to attacks, firefighters responded to multiple of emergency fires, medical personnel took care of the injured, and members of the communication squadron ensured the network stayed up and the lines of communication were open.
The wide range of events put Airmen in simulated chemical environments and were tested on their ability to survive and continue the mission. Airmen donned mission oriented protective posture suits when simulated chemical weapons posed a threat. Every person on this base knows our mission is to defend the base, accept follow on forces and take the fight north.
"It's very important to practice the way that we are going to fight and do these exercises because if we have to go fight tonight we need to know what our jobs are and react in a timely and efficient manner" said Seigfried.
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