By Staff Sgt. Regina R. Machine, Third Army/ARCENT Public AffairsAugust 11, 2011
CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait, Aug. 11, 2011 -- Third Army servicemembers conducted a mass-casualty exercise to validate incident response and exercise reporting procedures here Aug. 6.
The exercise scenario had a 25-passenger bus with a notional bomb attempting to drive through the gate. The exercise evaluated reaction to the detonation of the bomb, which hypothetically injured several Soldiers.
“My job at the MASCAL (mass casualty) scenario was to role play as a casualty victim,” said Sgt. Nicholas Davis with the 160th Signal Brigade South West Asia Cyber Center, Kuwait.
Davis was one of several servicemembers who role played as a casualty. The role players wore casualty cards and make up to simulate their wounds.
“I was assessed by multiple medical personnel who labeled my status red, meaning high priority,” Davis stated. “I was promptly rushed to the emergency room where I was treated.”
The exercise utilized several first responders, from civilian firefighters to military police, all of whom appreciated the chance to hone and sharpen their skills.
Operational controllers were tasked to look at every aspect of the medical training from the injury site, to arrival at the medical treatment facility.
“My expectations are for each level of care, from the first responders on the ground at the point of injury, to the Navy corpsman at the medical treatment facility, to use their skills and training to conserve the fighting strength,” said Master Sgt. Vincent Johnson, plans and operations noncommissioned officer for the 3rd Medical Deployment Support Command.
Division chiefs were also there checking the responses of their personnel.
“Everyone responded quickly and knew what the mission was,” said Rick Tabban, division chief, Emergency Medical Services, Area Support Group - Kuwait. “It was close to real-life because we actually had two ambulances called out on emergencies before the exercise commenced.”
Davis expressed what’s at the heart of mascal exercises such as these.
“I think these sorts of exercises are prudent for the simple fact that you never know when disaster will strike,” Davis said. “Most medical procedures are considered skill level one (basic level), but like with anything learned in life, if you don’t use it you’ll lose it. These skills, which are considered basic, can mean death to a casualty if the medical expert hesitates.”
Training scenarios like mascal exercises ensure that Third Army can continue their mission to sustain the fight by providing top-notch care for the wounded.