Home : Media : News : News Article View

Heavy Lifting: Landing Support Platoon Refines External Lift Capabilities

By Lance Cpl. Breanna Weisenberger | 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit | Dec. 14, 2016

CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa, Japan -- Marines with Landing Support Platoon, Combat Logistics Battalion 31, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, conducted annual helicopter support team and external load lift training Dec. 5-8, 2016, working with pilots from Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 262 (Reinforced).

Landing Support Platoon’s combined training with VMM-262 (Rein.) provides a crucial capability to the 31st MEU during humanitarian aid and disaster relief operations (HADR). During the training, the MV-22B Osprey pilots conducted external load lifts of critical supplies, including sand bags and tactical vehicle tires.

Ospreys can lift external loads of up to 12,500 pounds, which are chained to the underside of the aircraft. The landing support specialists practiced meticulous rigging techniques to secure loads to help maintain a high safety standard, according to Cpl. Zachary Stevens, a landing support specialist with the platoon.

“Our gear is rated to carry weights well beyond what the aircraft can lift to keep us within our safety boundaries,” said Stevens. “The nets maintain the integrity of the load and keep everything held in tightly.”

The landing support specialists work in teams to properly secure external loads to aircraft and monitor them during transport. The pilots maintain constant communication with the Landing Support Platoon Marines to ensure the external loads are carried safely, according to Stevens.

External load lift transports are normally used to move critical equipment from ship to shore quickly, with little room for error. When speed is essential, as it is during HADR, external load transport is often the best or only option, according to Staff Sgt. Davon Hammond, the platoon chief.

“This training gives the Marines a chance to practice ship-to-shore and shore-to-ship external lift procedures in a controlled environment,” said Hammond. “In humanitarian aid and disaster relief operations, external lifts are often the only way to transport heavy equipment and machinery to units in country when ground transport routes are impassable.

According to Hammond, training is taken very seriously because the equipment transported is needed to conduct HADR operations, including water purification and food distribution.

“External lifts require precision, attention to detail and strict holding to safety standards, every time,” said Hammond. “We take this training seriously because in a real-world situation that requires these lifts, lives are often hanging in the balance.”
CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
264,486
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
Leave and Liberty now Exempt from COVID Travel Restrictions
Sailors from the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile-destroyer USS Forrest Sherman (DDG 98) depart the ship following deployment. Forrest Sherman returned to Norfolk Naval Station after a regularly scheduled nine-month deployment in support of maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation. The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group has remained underway during their sustainment phase of OFRP as a ready carrier strike group during the COVID-19 global pandemic.
July 2, 2020 - WASHINGTON -- Effective immediately, leave and liberty outside the local area of your command is

USS McCampbell Returns to U.S. for Modernization
The guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG 85) breaks away from a formation with ships from Carrier Strike Group 5 and Expeditionary Strike Group 7 following a photo exercise to signify the completion of Valiant Shield 2016. Valiant Shield 2016 is a biennial, U.S.-only, field training exercise (FTX) with a focus on integration of joint training among U.S. forces. McCampbell is participating in Valiant Shield in an effort to increase naval integration and joint capabilities in the event of conflict, contingency, or disaster relief.
July 2, 2020 - PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii -- The guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG 85) departed Yokosuka,

Female Soldiers, JGSDF Members on Camp Zama Share Experiences as Women in Workforce
Staff Sgt. Jenny Cuevas, left, assigned to the 88th Military Police Detachment on Camp Zama, Japan, talks with other participants during an inaugural exchange program June 24 inside the JGSDF building on Camp Zama. The group met for an inaugural exchange program to discuss their experiences as women in their respective workforces. The bilateral discussion, the first of its kind on the installation, covered topics such as career development, child care, and balancing work and home life.
July 2, 2020 - CAMP ZAMA, Japan -- Four U.S. Army Soldiers and six Japan Ground Self-Defense Force members met here

Exercise Gryphon Jet
U.S. Special Operations Forces member repels onto the deck of a ship from a U.S. Air Force CV-22 Osprey assigned to the 21st Special Operations Squadron during Exercise Gryphon Jet at Yokota Air Base, Japan, June 15, 2020. Gryphon Jet is an integrated training exercise focused on improving interoperability throughout the special operations community.
July 1, 2020 - YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- The 353rd Special Operations Group organized exercise Gryphon Jet from

Chief of Naval Operations Sends Message to Fleet on Sustaining Readiness
Official seal of the Chief of Naval Operations.
July 1, 2020 - WASHINGTON -- Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday sent a message to the fleet stressing