CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait - Third Army Soldiers conducted a mass-casualty exercise to ensure force readiness at Camp Arifjan Dec. 4.

The exercise scenario had a local-national employee, who was forced by insurgents holding the employee's family hostage, bring a notional bomb on camp with a fictitious vehicle. The exercise was a reaction to the detonation of the bomb, which hypothetically injured several Soldiers.

"We're here to help train the first responders in the event of an incident," said Sgt. Keith Campbell of Schnecksville Pa., a container-control officer for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Area Support Group - Kuwait.

Campbell was one of several Soldiers who role played as casualties. The role players wore casualty cards and make up to imitate their wounds.

"These exercises let first responders make sure procedures are in place and that they know how to care for people so first responders feel a lot more comfortable when they get to the scene," Campbell said.

The exercise utilized several first responders, from civilian firefighters to military-dog handlers, all of whom appreciated the chance to hone and sharpen their skills.

"It's good practice," said Spc. Joseph Kaho of Fort Worth, Texas, a Soldier and role player with Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 143rd Transportation Command.

"Being a role player you can see from the outside looking in what first responders would do," Kaho said. "The more we practice the more we'll be ready in the event of a real incident."

Campbell expressed what's at the heart of mass-casualty exercises such as this.

"We prepare for the worst and hope for the best," Campbell said. "But in the event we are attacked here our response will be second nature - muscle memory."