Thursday, May 8, 2008

Medical Soldiers Show Readiness During Mass Casualty Battle Drill

By Pfc. Michael Schuch
2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division

FORWARD OPERATING BASE HAMMER, Iraq – Soldiers from Company C, 47th Forward Support Battalion, performed a simulated mass casualty drill at the troop medical clinic on Forward Operating Base Hammer, May 6.

A mass casualty event is any situation where there are more casualties than the aid station can normally handle.

“When a mass casualty call comes in, all physicians, from dentists to surgeons, are called in,” said Capt. Aaron Mallory, of Panama City, Fla., Company C commander. “Those who cannot help on the treatment floor are sent to help with triage.”

The 47th FSB used the training to rehearse procedures conducted by the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division. After evaluating the mass casualty event, leaders of the 47th FSB will adjust tactics to create their own standard operating procedures.

“The thing about mass casualty simulations is that you can never get them perfect, which is why it is called practicing medicine,” said Staff Sgt. Chad Wilson, of Hendersonville, N.C.

This training event is important for Soldiers because it maintains readiness and offers a chance for adjustments before handling real situations, Mallory said.

The 47th FSB is currently assigned to the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, from Baumholder, Germany, deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom since April.

The 2nd BCT, 1st Armd. Div., is currently taking over the 3rd HBCT’s area of operations in the Mada’in Qada.

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