By Sgt. Robert Schaffner, 4th IBCT, 3rd ID Public AffairsAugust 5, 2010
FORT STEWART, Ga. - You're out on patrol in an up-armored High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle more commonly referred to as simply the Humvee, and you suddenly hear "ROLLOVER! ROLLOVER! ROLLOVER!"
What do you do'
Fortunately for Soldiers assigned to Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield, that feeling of uncertainty is lessened by Humvee Egress Assistance Training offered here. Rollovers have been, and continue to be, a threat for today's servicemembers, so being prepared in the event of a rollover can be the ultimate factor between life and death.
The people, who are instrumental in getting Soldiers HEAT trained in order to become trainers for their Soldiers, are the instructors of the 3rd Infantry Division, Command Maintenance Evaluation and Training team.
"We are the guys behind the scene," said Ernest Everett, 3rd ID COMET instructor, master driver and HEAT trainer. "We aren't responsible for HEAT training to all Soldiers, but responsible for its implementation; we are the subject matter experts and we are here for the Soldiers."
The 3d ID COMET team, which was founded on Fort Stewart, May 16, 2000, as part of the U.S. Army Forces Command COMET program, is responsible for teaching, coaching and mentoring in areas of maintenance, supply, property accountability and drivers training, said COMET Team Chief Tony Walker.
"We provide the training for the noncommissioned officers to go back with the ability to create an effective driver training program for their battalion." said Ramos Efrain, COMET team instructor and HEAT trainer.
The training is conducted over a five-day period consisting of 90 percent classroom work, which includes policy and procedures for both the Army and Fort Stewart and 10 percent hands-on training.
According to Walker, a HEAT training simulator costs $150,000 and is designed to simulate a Humvee roll-over. During the simulation, trainers are able to rotate and stop in various positions affording Soldiers the ability to rehearse various egress techniques at a variety of angles to include turning 360 degrees in any direction.
After enduring the turning and rolling in the simulator, many of the Soldiers attending the class, July 30, said they found the training to be very useful.
"It definitely gives you an idea of what a rollover would be like," said Sgt. Dan Beverley, assigned to 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Hunter Army Airfield. "It would obviously be more violent in real life, but it gives you an idea."
Through this very vital training, we bring awareness and realistic training for the Soldiers to be aware of what to do if their vehicle is turned upside down in a rollover, said Walker.
Aside from HEAT training COMET is responsible for a variety of courses taught on Fort Stewart.
"We have 25 different courses," said Walker.
Some of the courses the COMET team offers are the Maintenance Managers Course, Master Driver Certification Course, Standard Army Maintenance System Enhanced Operator Course, Commanders Supply Course and Unit Movement Officer Course.
"We are creating a small arms weapons course, where we will train and certify unit armorers," said Walker. The class is scheduled to begin, Sept. 13.
For more information, contact COMET through your division or brigade's G-4 or S-4 or contact Tony Walker, COMET team chief, at 912-767-1018.