By Capt. Juan C. LagoJanuary 16, 2008
FORT IRWIN, Calif. (Army News Service, Jan. 16, 2008) -- Brand new, lined up one after the other in a seemingly endless row, the Army's current Up-Armored Humvees have finally made their way to the National Training Center.
The new M-1151A1 with Fragmentation Kit 5 and Objective Gunner's protection Kit (is currently being fielded in the United States for units to train on before heading to a combat zone where over 20,000 UAH's dominate the battlefield. Product Manager Light Tactical Vehicles is responsible for the fieldings and manages the Army's entire inventory of Humvees, ensuring sustainment from "cradle to grave".
Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines will be able to train as they fight using the actual vehicles they will be using in theater. Being the premier warfightng center, NTC is receiving more than 90 M-1151A1s with FK5 and OGPK to keep them in line with current trends and equipment being used on the battlefield.
"Units will now be training up instead of down," said Col. Paul Hurley, commander of the NTC Support Brigade, who's unit is responsible for maintaining the newly arrived equipment, as well as training units visiting NTC on current and emerging trends.
The mission of NTC is to provide tough, realistic, joint and combined arms training in multi-national venues across the full spectrum of conflict set in a contemporary operating environment, officials said. NTC assists commanders in developing trained, competent leaders and Soldiers by presenting them with current real-time scenarios to improve the force and prepare for success in the war on terrorism and future joint battlefields.
"We are providing Soldiers with great capabilities and giving them first-rate equipment," Col. Hurley said. "Soldiers will now be able to train as they fight using the same equipment they will fall into in theater."
The M-1151A1 with FK5 and is the Army's most recent addition to the UAH fleet, providing IED blast protection and small arms protection, while adding all the latest safety enhancements, to include the Gunners Restraint System, the 3-point seatbelt, the vehicular intercom systems and the Fire Suppression System. Additionally, the M-1151A1s are being fielded with the new Objective Gunners Protective Kit, which provides the capability for the gunner to view the battlefield without compromising safety thru the factory-installed Transparent Armored Glass.
"Our goal is to provide the NTC and other training sites with the most updated, reliable and maintainable equipment. These vehicles provide a great deal of protection allowing Soldiers to focus on mission accomplishment here at the training sites. Training on this equipment before deployment gives Soldiers confidence in their equipment when deployed on the battlefield." said Lt. Col. Samuel Homsy, Product Manager for Light Tactical Vehicles.
During the M-1151 handover, the NTC Support Brigade, Soldiers are given extensive training on how to operate, drive and maintain the vehicles. The New Equipment Training Team conducts a train-the-trainer class to Soldiers and maintainers, instructing them on the capabilities of the M-1151 along with how to maintain the new armored Humvee.
"They are top-of-the-line trucks," said Col. Hurley. "I'm glad we have them."
(Capt. Juan Carlos Lago serves as the Assistant Product Manager for the M-1151.)