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NEWS | Sept. 22, 2023

U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Strike Team hosts training exercise

By Airman 1st Class Aidan Thompson 87th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

The U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Strike Team hosted a training event on Sept 15, 2023, offering service members from around the joint base a taste of how the Atlantic Strike Team stays mission-ready.

“We hold exercises on a weekly basis. They're rotated through all the different categories of responses that we may do,” said U.S. Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Christopher R. Taylor, Atlantic Strike Team command chief. “We also deploy for different training opportunities and industry standard training so that we're keeping up to speed on all of our industry partners that are out there as well.”

The training scenario simulated a sinking ship and participants were tasked with plugging the holes of the vessel to ensure their safety. They hammered large cork-like devices and absorbent towels into the holes to block out the incoming water.

“The Atlantic Strike Team was created in law during the Clean Water Act in 1972. Congress stated that the Coast Guard shall have three strike teams, consisting of personnel that are highly trained and experienced to respond to any hazard globally,” Taylor said.

Offering training opportunities like this to service members helps boost awareness of the Atlantic Strike Team’s mission and allows for more joint service support.

“As the 87th Air Base Wing Command Post, we support the Atlantic Strike Team if anything were ever to happen,” said U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Sarah M. Stauffer, 87th ABW Command Post emergency actions controller. “They're an organization I didn't know very well. I find it important that we reach out and talk with the different agencies that we support. We don't know how to help and service our partners if we don't know who they are.”

The ability to work and train together as a joint base contributes to JB MDL’s Total Force capabilities.

“Being such a niche kind of unit, not even our Coast Guard members know what we do other than we exist,” Taylor said. “Getting that information out to highlight all the great work that our service members do here on a daily basis is definitely something that we try and project. We also really enjoy the joint services that we receive from the Navy, Army and Air Force on base.”

These types of trainings enable JB MDL to fully function as a joint installation collaborating initiatives and operations from all mission partners.