Army mariners conducts weapons training at sea

| May 20, 2016 | 0 Comments
Photo by Sgt. Jon Heinrich, 8th Theater Sustainment Public Affairs Pvt. Monique Engman, watercraft operator, 545th Trans. Co., fires a M249 SAW from the bridge deck of LSV-2 CW3 Harold C. Clinger during waterborne gunnery training, May 16.

Pvt. Monique Engman, watercraft operator, 545th Trans. Co., fires a M249 SAW from the bridge deck of LSV-2 CW3 Harold C. Clinger during waterborne gunnery training, May 16.

 

Story and photos by Sgt. Jon Heinrich
8th Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs

 

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM — The crew of the 545th Transportation Company, 8th Theater Sustainment Command’s Logistical Support Vessel-2 CW3 Harold C. Clinger conducted weapons training off the coast of Oahu, Monday.

The Soldiers trained to become more familiar with their crew-served weapons in a waterborne environment, where targets are further away and rolling conditions make stationary targets into moving targets, according to Chief Warrant Officer 2 Juan Miranda, the third mate for LSV-2. Among the firearms the Soldiers trained with were M249 squad automatic weapons, M2 .50 caliber machine guns and the M203 and M320 grenade launchers.

“It was exciting, and it was nice to have the opportunity to be able to fire even though I wasn’t scheduled to,” said Pvt. Brittany Richard, an administrative clerk with 545th Trans. Co. who is transitioning to a watercraft operator. “It’s difficult because your target’s moving, and then you’re moving as well, and it was harder to aim. It was still fun, and it was a nice experience to get.”

In order to conduct the training, the crew had to sail miles out to sea to the Navy’s Special Operating Area 4, a designated weapons training area the Navy monitors to allow vessels to fire weapons without interference from aircraft or other boats.

“If there was a vessel that was crossing through this path, then they would give us a call, as opposed to being somewhere where it’s not controlled and a vessel could pop up out of nowhere or a low-flying aircraft could get in our way,” Miranda said.

Soldiers fired each weapon at a biodegradable, orange, inflatable target on the surface of the water. They took turns firing from both starboard and port sides of the vessel with the exact same weapon system mounted.

Accompanying the crew in their training were a few civilian logistics assistance representatives who each had a different specialty to support the training, such as weapons and medical assistance.

The training went well, and Miranda said he would like to see more realistic training in the future by using moving or remote-controlled targets for the Soldiers to react to.

“Overall it’s really good training,” Miranda said. “Everybody’s familiar with their weapons and it helps us stay fully mission capable.”

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Category: News, Training

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