Gas, Gas, Gas! 2IBCT Warriors test their mettle in CBRN

| February 21, 2018 | 0 Comments
A Soldier assigned Echo Company, 65th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division exits a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is an annual event designed to prepare Soldiers in the event of being exposed to harmful gases and chemicals while deployed. The use of CS gas allows instructors to demonstrate the proper use of gas masks in a potentially dangerous situation. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

A Soldier assigned Echo Company, 65th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division exits a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is an annual event designed to prepare Soldiers in the event of being exposed to harmful gases and chemicals while deployed. The use of CS gas allows instructors to demonstrate the proper use of gas masks in a potentially dangerous situation. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

Story and photos by
1st Lt. Jordan Linder
2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs
25th Infantry Division Public Affairs

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — CS gas, it’s a smell that’s familiar to most in the military, if they’ve visited a gas chamber.

There, as soon as the canisters are opened, your skin begins to tingle.

As you step inside, the back of your neck feels hot, and then the muffled yells of the instructor order you to remove your mask. The first deep breath without a gas mask creates a familiar uncomfortable situation.

Soldiers of Echo Company, 65th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, conducted Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear training (CBRN), here, Feb. 5.

A Soldier assigned to Echo Company, 65th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division exits a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is an annual event designed to prepare Soldiers in the event of being exposed to harmful gases and chemicals while deployed. The use of CS gas allows instructors to demonstrate the proper use of gas masks in a potentially dangerous situation. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

A Soldier assigned to Echo Company, 65th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division exits a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is an annual event designed to prepare Soldiers in the event of being exposed to harmful gases and chemicals while deployed. The use of CS gas allows instructors to demonstrate the proper use of gas masks in a potentially dangerous situation. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

The training is done to prepare Soldiers for chemical attacks. CS gas, commonly known as tear gas, is used to train Soldiers within the gas chamber.

Soldiers began the morning by lining up outside of a gas chamber to begin doing pre-checks on their masks in order to ensure their equipment worked properly.

“Having confidence in your equipment is what can ultimately determine mission success,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Sean Horval, senior enlisted adviser of 2nd IBCT, 25th ID. “There is always a chance that with future conflicts chemicals could be involved. It is always smart to prep for the worst. If or when something does happen, we are ready.”

After lining up for the chamber, Soldiers were instructed to make sure their masks had a good seal. By ensuring the masks were properly sealed, the mask was able to do its job in regulating clean air through the user.

Upon entering, Soldiers were ordered to break the seals on their mask, to re-seal their masks and then to fully remove their masks before exiting the chamber.

“My eyes were burning; they started watering,” said Pvt. Jeremiah Cannon, a mechanic assigned to Echo Company. “After taking our masks off, we were told to explain why we joined the Army as a test to see how long we could take the gas. I could barely get my answer out; my lungs were burning.”

The exit to the gas chamber suddenly opened, and the Soldiers of Company poured out as quickly as they could squeeze through the door.

Instructors began yelling out “Don’t touch your eyes or your face!” to prevent Soldiers from rubbing more of the irritating contaminant on their bodies.

Command Sgt. Maj. Sean Horval, senior enlisted advisor of 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division has his mask inspected to tests the seal of his mask before entering a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. The purpose of Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is to teach Soldiers the importance of properly applying a gas mask and other protective gear in order to potentially save lives in dangerous situations. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

Command Sgt. Maj. Sean Horval, senior enlisted advisor of 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division has his mask inspected to tests the seal of his mask before entering a gas chamber here on Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on Feb. 5, 2018. The purpose of Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) training is to teach Soldiers the importance of properly applying a gas mask and other protective gear in order to potentially save lives in dangerous situations. (U.S. Army Photo by 1st Lt. Jordan Linder)

“The training is great in that it allows Soldiers to build proficiency in the event of a nuclear, biological or chemical attack,” said 2nd Lt. Allison Carlisle, Maintenance Control officer for the 65th BEB. “By going through a gas chamber, individuals are able to build confidence in their own actions as well as their equipment.”

The CBRN training is an annual requirement that all units and Soldiers are required to partake in each year.

Though the training can appear intimidating, being familiar with procedures to prevent the inhalation of toxic chemicals can save lives in the event Soldiers ever have to do it for real when deployed.

The CBRN training, in all, only takes a few minutes to knock out. Within a short period of trying on masks and entering the gas chamber, Soldiers are exiting the gas chamber for the next iteration of individuals to test their fortitude against the uncomfortable gas.

“CBRN training is designed to make Soldiers comfortable with being uncomfortable,” explained Horval. “If an attack were to ever happen, these Soldiers can rely on their training to save their lives and to continue to push for mission success.”

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Category: News, Safety, Training

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