Friday, April 19, 2013

Reserve Raptor crews test combat readiness

by Tech. Sgt. Dana Rosso
477th Fighter Group

4/15/2013 - JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska  -- The 477th Fighter Group participated in Polar Force 13-3, a two-phase operational readiness exercise designed to test the unit's ability to deploy on short notice as well as to operate and survive in a wartime environment.

The exercise was part of the unit's normally scheduled training plan. Phase one tests the unit's ability to respond to a short notice tasking, prepare aircraft, equipment and personnel to deploy to a simulated hostile location. Phase two tests the unit's ability to survive in a simulated combat environment.

"This exercise provided a great opportunity for our operations, maintenance and support personnel to exercise their deployment capability," said Col. Tyler Otten 477th FG commander. "While our pilots and maintainers have exercised with the active duty's 3rd Wing before, this was the first time the 477th FG support personnel have participated. It showed us what areas we need to work, but also showed us how much we have accomplished since the group was activated."

This is the first time that the Air Force Reserve 477th Fighter Group has fully participated alongside the Active Duty 673rd Air Base Wing and 3rd Wing as well the Air National Guard 176th Wing, demonstrating Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson's commitment to Total Force Integration.

Throughout the exercise Airmen responded to simulated attacks and scenarios designed to test their ability to survive and operate under the stressful conditions of a hostile environment. These simulated attacks range from conventional or chemical attacks delivered by missiles, mortars, rockets,
small arms fire as well as improvised explosive devices. Airmen are evaluated on their ability respond to each simulated situation and keep a combat focus as they continue to execute the mission.

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