Team Buckley bolsters its emergency preparedness

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Michael D. Mathews
  • 460th Space Wing Public Affairs

On Jun. 21, 2018, the 460th Force Support Squadron partnered with the 130th Special Operations FSS on Buckley Air Force Base to conduct Search and Recovery Training in order to bolster emergency preparedness.

“This training is going to prepare the team as best it can mentally,” said William House, 460th FSS readiness chief.  “We have to be prepared for an emergency response no matter what.”

Airmen undergoing SAR training are required to complete at least six hours of classroom and field instruction combined. During instruction, Airmen learned SAR basics, including how to find, tag and transport bodies, remains and other objects to their respective places.

During the field training, Airmen swept a large perimeter that simulated an airplane crash site. The simulated area consisted of life-sized dummies, real meat and other objects and Airmen were tasked to tag, bag and GPS nearly 270 different remains.

“We are expected to go to war but we never know what to expect,” said Senior Airman Cindey Zeldedon-Sanchez, 460th FSS mortuary technician. “Our job is to prepare our Airmen as best as possible so they know how to react.”

SAR Airmen were briefed by various base organizations to ensure they understand all the possibilities that could be seen in the field and how to handle them.

Buckley AFB’s SAR unit can be activated at places much farther than the local area and at any time.

“Our area of search and recovery at Buckley is vast, our jurisdiction is huge, stretching into many states such as parts of Wyoming and even Nebraska,” said Araceli Searles, 460th FSS installation mortuary officer.

A SAR team is a required capability at every military installation, so it’s need to function effectively is very important, especially at Buckley AFB.

 “The most important part of search and recovery is making our Airmen physically, mentally and spiritually prepared to carry out their duty, that’s the key to a successful mission,” added Searles.