• Soldiers from the 19th Engineer Battalion unload a CH-47 Chinook during the battalion's air assault operations training on Aug. 25. During the training, Soldiers trained on the proper methods of how to evaluate and treat multiple casualties, establish landing zone security, MEDEVAC multiple casualties and sling load a vehicle for pick up by helicopter. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Michael Behlin)

    19th Engineers conduct air assault operations

    Soldiers from the 19th Engineer Battalion unload a CH-47 Chinook during the battalion's air assault operations training on Aug. 25. During the training, Soldiers trained on the proper methods of how to evaluate and treat multiple casualties, establish...

  • Soldiers from the 19th Engineer Battalion prepare for takeoff in a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter while others pull security during the battalion's air assault operations training on Aug. 25. The training taught Soldiers the proper method of establishing landing zone security and preparing casualties for medical evacuation. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Michael Behlin)

    19th Engineers conduct air assault operations

    Soldiers from the 19th Engineer Battalion prepare for takeoff in a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter while others pull security during the battalion's air assault operations training on Aug. 25. The training taught Soldiers the proper method of establishing...

FORT KNOX, Ky. (August 30, 2011) -- Fort Knox's 19th Engineer Battalion conducted an air assault training event Thursday, August 25 to provide Soldiers a better understanding of air operations.

During the training, Soldiers of the 19th Eng. Bn. trained on the proper methods of how to evaluate and treat multiple casualties, establish landing zone security, MEDEVAC multiple casualties and sling load a vehicle for pick up by helicopter. Throughout the training, Soldiers also learned how to properly load and unload the UH-60 Blackhawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters.

"The objective of this training was not to certify or qualify Soldiers, but to familiarize them on the operations of the UH-60 and CH-47 helicopters," said Cpt. Ray Zelenek, a training officer with the 19th Eng. Bn. "Many of the younger Soldiers have never seen or dealt with this equipment, so it's a good chance for them to have the opportunity to get familiar while having fun."

Cpt. Zelenek said that it was important for the Soldiers to train on tasks and procedures that they would use in a deployed environment.

The fact that many of the Soldiers had not experienced training involving air operations and helicopters made for an interesting training day, especially when involving the CH-47 Chinook. The hurricane force winds created from the propellers downward forces left many Soldiers looking for something to brace themselves with and covering their eyes.

"It's hard to explain in words to Soldiers what it's like to work with this helicopter, until they get out there and see for themselves what it's like," said Staff Sgt. Christopher Hoffman. "But in the end they all end up loving it and want to do it again."

While the 19th Eng. Bn. is not scheduled to deploy any time soon, the training was important to the Soldiers as it provided them with valuable knowledge.

"It's really important that the Soldiers get this familiarization training now so that they're not clueless when it counts," said Staff Sgt. Hoffman.

The 19th Eng. Bn.'s leadership said that they were pleased with their Soldiers performance during the training and felt that Soldiers would be able to use this experience in their future assignments.

Photos and story by Sgt. Michael Behlin, 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) public affairs.
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Page last updated Wed August 31st, 2011 at 00:00