Always Ready
By Spc. Andres Chandler
2 ABCT UPAR

Fort Stewart, Ga. - Soldiers from the 3rd Battalion, 67th Armored Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, returned from Hound Focus intent on recovering all vehicles and equipment on Jan. 30, at Fort Stewart, Ga.

The Hounds of Hell conquered their Battalion force on force exercise and now face a speedy turnaround into a joint operations gunnery on 10 February 2019.

Recovery operations are vital to a Battalion's success, ensuring assets are fully mission capable.

To some Recovery may seem like it's not a big deal without realizing the tremendous impact inoperable equipment has on a commander's plan and on battlefield operations.

"Proper maintenance on combat platforms is the basic driving force behind any successful commanders intent. Without attention to detail in our maintenance procedures, a company size element can quickly be reduced to a platoon size element, unable to succeed in the company's original mission." Said Cpt. Matt Belcher, company commander of Company A, 3rd Battalion, 67th Armored Regiment, 2ABCT, 3ID.

After returning from Hound Focus, Soldiers conducted wash rack operations to clean their equipment and allow Soldiers to more easily spot deficiencies. Maintaining cleanliness helps Soldiers detect faults that may be hidden underneath mud, dirt, or road grime.

Once vehicles are cleaned to standard, crews begin layouts. Layouts are done to ensure equipment is still present, operable, and not damaged. Layouts allow new soldiers to train and develop their knowledge and skills on weapons, equipment, and proper Preventative Maintenance Checks and Services.

PMCS are the checks, services, and maintenance performed before, during, and after any type of operation or before the use of all types of equipment. Doing a PMCS check reduces the number of failures and improves effectiveness of equipment.

"When maintenance is neglected after a field exercise, equipment can be damaged resulting in dangerous conditions putting Soldiers in harm's way and potentially costing the Army millions." Said Spc. Dylan Trahan, a mechanic assigned to Company H, 3rd Battalion, 67th Armored Regiment.

If faults are present, Soldiers will begin procedures to correct the discovered faults, prepare the equipment for turn in, or receive new gear if available, all in an effort to remain fully mission capable.

In the coming weeks the hounds of hell will be continuing their training with support from the 9th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2ABCT, in order to maintain their efficiency and lethality in preparation for Spartan Focus.

Spartan Focus is a Brigade echelon force on force exercise used to train and certify platoons, companies and Battalions under live fire conditions to support the brigade's rotation to the National Training Center later this year.