MCT processes over 1,000 pieces of equipment
1 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army vehicles are staged outside the ARC Endurance, a vehicle carrier vessel, at the Port of Constanta, Romania, August 2nd, 2019, before being loaded alongside more than 1,200 pieces of equipment used in a variety of summer exercises in Europe.... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
MCT processes over 1,000 pieces of equipment
2 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Soldiers and Romanian contractors load the ARC Endurance, a vehicle carrier vessel, with over 1,200 pieces of Army equipment that was used in a variety of summer exercises in Europe at the Port of Constanta, Romania, August 2nd, 2019. After the ... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
MCT processes over 1,000 pieces of equipment
3 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Soldiers from the 839th Transportation Battalion make final checks on an MTV that has been loaded onto the ARC Endurance at the Port of Constanta, Romania, August 2nd, 2019. The Endurance is a vehicle transport vessel that will take equipme... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
MCT processes over 1,000 pieces of equipment
4 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Soldiers tag Humvees as they are loaded onto the ARC Endurance at the Port of Constanta, Romania, August 2nd, 2019. The Endurance is a vehicle transport vessel that will make an 11-day journey from Romania to Charleston, South Carolina, to ... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Army prepares to move more than 1,000 pieces of equipment through Romanian port
5 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – The staging area holds all the overflow vehicles that must get ready for shipment back to the United States at the Port of Constanta, Romania, July 1, 2019. The vehicles were separated according to whether they are being shipped at the end of July or... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Army prepares to moves over 1,000 pieces through Romanian port
6 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Romanian workers help clean military vehicles to pass inspection at the Port of Constanta, Romania, July 1, 2019. This biocleaning is important for the environment of any materials being brought in from other countries to prevent potential introducti... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
U.S. Soldiers work alongside Romanians to prepare for redeployment
7 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Spc. Eddie Yacab, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Infantry Brigade, 28th Infantry Division, Pennsylvania Army National Guard, powerwashes a Stryker at the Port of Constanta, July 26, 2019. Soldiers must thoroughly wash every piece of equipment that was... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
U.S. Soldiers work alongside Romanians to prepare for redeployment
8 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Soldiers line up Stykers for cleaning and inspection to prepare for redeployment back to the United States at the Port of Constanta, Romania, July 26, 2019. Making sure the vehicles pass customs inspections ensures that no foreign elements ... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

CONSTANTA, Romania -- The end of a variety of summer exercises across the European theater is the beginning of a long journey for Soldiers and equipment from overseas to stateside. Through careful planning, attention to detail and skillful execution, movement control teams make it possible to move thousands of pieces of equipment back to the United States.

At the break of dawn on August 2, 2019, the 152nd MCT, alongside Romanian civilian contractors, prepared and loaded a total of 1,297 vehicles and pieces of equipment onto the vehicle carrier vessel ARC Endurance at the Port of Constanta, Romania.

The 152nd, augmented by the 624th MCT, has been working for over a month to prepare multiple units' equipment to make the 11-day journey back home.

Transportation battalions and the MCTs work together to coordinate the receipt, movement and tracking of equipment. The primary role of an MCT is to coordinate the transportation of equipment and keep accountability of the assets at all times.

"Ensuring that the right equipment is in the right place, to go on the right vessel, to get to the right destination is very difficult at times," said Maj. Benjamin Birtles, executive officer for the 839th Transportation Battalion. "But this is an integral part of being able to deploy our force and be able to do so rapidly and accurately."

Early on in the planning process, the participating units identify what equipment they need to support an exercise or mission, and the transportation battalion coordinates the acquisition of the gear. After the conclusion of the exercises, it is the job of the MCTs and parent transportation battalions to work together to get the equipment back state-side.

Preparing this amount of equipment for shipment is a multi-step process. The first step is to "bioclean" all of the equipment. Biocleanings, also called agricultural washes, are essential to ensure that no foreign contaminants make their way back to the United States and occur any time vehicles and equipment leave and return to the U.S. This is a

time consuming task, with each vehicle taking around 32 to 48 hours to clean and get ready for customs inspections.

After the vehicles go through the biocleaning process, they are inspected by customs officials. Robert Walters, Customs Executive Agency, U.S. Army Europe Headquarters, said that preventing any foreign vegetation, pests or possible contaminants from crossing borders prevents potential illnesses or agricultural disturbances.

"We inspect the vehicles top to bottom, front to back, every nook, every cranny gets checked for dirt and vegetation," Walters said. "Our goal is to prevent any invasive species and agricultural contaminants from entering the U.S." After the inspection, the vehicles are taken to a "sanitation lot," a section of land that is cleaned prior to staging the vehicles for shipment. This ensures that the vehicles remain in their "ready to ship" conditions until it is time to be loaded onto the vessel.

Birtles said loading the vessel takes a lot of considerations and careful planning.

"We manage where each thing is placed in conjunction with the chief mate or first mate of the vessel," said Birtles. "It's very important that we measure down to the inch how many pieces will fit on each deck. We'll place things as tightly as possible and as carefully as possible with an eye on safety."

As the vehicle loading operation was underway, Capt. Tyler Cline, 839th Transportation Battalion, said he looks forward to the next port operation.

"Nothing happens until something moves, that's the Transportation Corps," Cline said. "It's our job, and we are happy to do it. We are happy to be here and keep the never ending flow of equipment going. From here we will move right on to helping the Soldiers and equipment of Agile Spirit get home."