KADENA AIR BASE, Japan --
The 18th Civil Engineer Group teamed up with the U.S. Marine Corps 9th Engineer Support Battalion and the U.S. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 5 for joint service training and exercises in Airfield Damage Repair (ADR) capabilities during their monthly Prime Base Engineer Emergency Force (BEEF) Week at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Oct. 18-22, 2021.
Prime BEEF Week includes a variety of readiness training such as specialized vehicle training, ADR table-top exercises, Minimum Airfield Operating Surface Marking System (MAOSMS) training, Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC), and Unit Control Center (UCC) Operations, and ends with a 24-hour exercise to consolidate all their training into one event.
“It’s the ‘Year of Readiness’, but readiness should always be our priority,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Patrick Singson, 18th CEG Prime BEEF manager. “The 18th CEG has recently taken the way forward in furthering our training, and we often integrate our force with joint service partnerships with the Marines, Navy, and Japan Air Self-Defense Force, exercising internally each month.”
During these exercises, participants conduct Emergency Airfield Lighting Systems setups, which are designed to provide a rapid airfield lighting system, and a power source with backup capabilities. The Mobile Aircraft Arresting System is a vehicle-transportable, trailer-mounted emergency braking system for all tail hook equipped fighter aircraft; a versatile self-contained asset capable of being installed rapidly in expeditionary or contingency environments that don’t feature any permanent infrastructure.
Other training events included spalls repair, MAOSMS and other specialty teams utilizing training to hone skills and complete the mission with precision to ensure aircraft can land safely anywhere, anytime, in any environment. Whether it be soil or concrete surfaces, the 18th CEG trains to adapt to any situation to ensure emergency arresting capabilities can be met even in the most austere environments, launching and recovering combat aircraft in the shortest possible time.
This past Prime BEEF Week was particularly unique, as the Airmen, Sailors and Marines had the opportunity to meet with U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. John Allen, Air Force Civil Engineer Center commander, during his U.S. Pacific Air Forces tour.
“The Shogun Engineers showcased our joint interoperability and how well we train and prepare against our adversaries,” Singson said. “At the same time, several subject matter experts discussed the team’s shortfalls, limiting factors, and possible solutions in becoming a more lean and agile force.”
Maj. Gen. Allen witnessed the advantages of having joint service capabilities here in Okinawa, and how members worked together to increase lethality and readiness.
“It’s a great experience to work with other members from different branches,” said Senior Airman Benjamin Superales, 18th Civil Engineer Squadron pavements and equipment apprentice. “Sharing our techniques and practices makes us a stronger, more ready force.”