151st Civil Engineering Squadron Conducts training at Fargo Regional Training Site

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  • By TSgt. Jeremy Giacoletto-Stegall
  • 151 ARW/PA
The 151st Air Refueling Wing Civil Engineering Squadron can build, repair or save anything from roads and runways to buildings, tents and towers. The 151st CES had a chance to train and practice their skills September 5-8 at the Fargo North Dakota Regional Training Site, located at the North Dakota Air National Guard Base in Fargo, N.D.

"Fargo has every piece of civil-engineering equipment imaginable," said Chief Master Sgt. Douglas Lukes, 151st CES Chief of Operations. "They have all the equipment our troops will encounter when deployed."

Over the course of a four-day weekend, firefighters practiced putting out fires in both building and plane mockups, training on aircraft-arresting gear, disabling ejection seats and extracting unconscious crewmembers from downed aircraft.

The Pavement Maintenance shop trained with road graders, bulldozers, bobcats and backhoes, to name a few. Training took place in a large, open field, which allowed them to grade and dig in a variety of scenarios.

The Structures shop built and dismantled several semipermanent structures, as well as put together a 3,000-square-foot runway patch, dragging it several hundred yards to cover a simulated crater.

"Our runway is unique," said Staff Sgt. Christopher Larson, 119th RTS heavy-equipment trainer. "We can conduct full, runway-repair exercises where everyone works together in a realistic environment."

The Utilities shop purified a muddy, rat-infested pool of water into clean, fresh and drinkable water. They also trained on equipment designed to install and remove telephone poles.

The Power Production shop learned how to use multiple generators, from smaller portable units to larger ones, designed to supply power to an entire base. They ran several troubleshooting scenarios and gained proficiency with basic and advanced maintenance skills.

The Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioner shop helped to fight the Fargo heat by bringing old air conditioners to life, fixing freezers and practicing their skills on the same types of equipment found in deployment locations around the world.

The Emergency Management shop gained proficiency in the planning, preparing, responding and mitigating of natural and man-made disasters through the use of atmospheric surveying, digital plotting and vulnerability assessments.

"Traveling to remote training sites like Fargo helps build the unit up as a team and teaches us to learn to rely on one another and gel as a group," said Master Sgt. Carl Greene, first sergeant of the 151st CES.