Cameras strengthen force protection at combined security checkpoints

| June 23, 2011 | 0 Comments
Spc. Michael Hubbard, Troop A, 2nd Sqdn., 14th Cav. Regt., 2nd BCT, 25th ID, constructs mounting brackets to support the emplacement of the RDISS at COS Cobra, Diyala province, Iraq, recently. (1st Lt. Kyle Miller | 2nd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs, 25th Infantry Division)

Spc. Michael Hubbard, Troop A, 2nd Sqdn., 14th Cav. Regt., 2nd BCT, 25th ID, constructs mounting brackets to support the emplacement of the RDISS at COS Cobra, Diyala province, Iraq, recently. (1st Lt. Kyle Miller | 2nd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs, 25th Infantry Division)

2nd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division
Public Affairs

Safety of Soldiers still remains of paramount importance

OPERATING SITE COBRA, Iraq — From trip-wire flares to seismic and acoustic sensors, scout platoons use a range of high-tech equipment and low-tech guile to compensate for smaller organization size and to enhance survivability on the ground during operations.

Scouts at combined checkpoints in the Diyala province, here, recently emplaced several Rapid Deployment Integrated Surveillance Systems cameras, which are normally reserved for much larger bases.

“The RDISS provides the checkpoints with an additional set of eyes and enhances the force protection of our Soldiers operating there,” said Lt. Col. Joel Miller, executive officer, 2nd Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division.

Equipping the checkpoints with RDISS helps protect Soldiers and their Iraqi counterparts and increases their overall situational awareness, Miller said.

“At this point, our platoon checkpoint has just as many force protection assets as a (larger base) in Iraq,” said 1st Lt. Noah Switzer, platoon leader, Troop A, 2nd Sqdn., 14th Cav. Regt., 2nd BCT. “You name it, we’ve got it, and we’re putting it to good use.”

The RDISS consists of durable outdoor cameras that are similar to commercially-available versions often employed in malls and businesses. But like any fielded technology, setup became more complicated in the austere checkpoint environment.

Filling sand bags and building wooden structures for the past 10 months, Soldiers from Troop A, “Aces High,” 2nd Sqdn., 14th Cav. Regt., 2nd BCT, completed the important, yet tedious, work involved in force protection. As some Soldiers worked extra security shifts, others picked up saws and drills to help the field support representatives emplace the RDISS.

“The squadron command is completely dedicated to improving the force protection and security of each one of the checkpoints,” Miller said. “Nothing is more important than the safety of our Soldiers.”

Once in place, the RDISS camera system is simple to use, said Jeff Bowling, a field support representative, comparing its interface with those of modern video games.

Sitting in front of two flat-screen monitors, Staff Sgt. Nicholas Lemay, scout, Troop A, 2nd Sqdn., 14th Cav. Regt., 2nd BCT, navigated the controls. A twist of the joystick zoomed the camera in, while a few mouse clicks brought up the burn CD feature.

“It complements our other force protection improvements,” Lemay said. “If someone is outside our new gate, an operator can check the system and realize it’s one of us and let (them) in.”

 

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Category: Deployed Forces, News

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