Pell City Squadron Alabama Wing – Civil Air Patrol

June 2010
Jun 3rd 4th 10th 12th 13th 17th 19th 24th Cadet meeting 1800-2030 AL WNG Water survival course PLR Cadet meeting 1800-2030 Officers Meeting 1830-2030 Commanders Call MXF 0900 NESA Camp Atterbury, IN Cadet meeting 1800-2030 AL WNG Encampment Cadet meeting 1800-2030 Officers Meeting 1830-2030

Commanders Corner: As we enter the month of June we look ahead to the busiest time of the year for our Squadron. But let us take a minute and reflect on why we have the freedoms that we all enjoy. The Memorial Day weekend is a time for our country to stop and honor our fallen soldiers. It is a time to pause from our busy schedules and remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. We have so many freedoms that we so often take for granted. We must never forget the reason we have these freedoms is that so many men and women purchased these freedoms for us and paid a very high price. In many instances they paid the ultimate price. As you stop from your busy schedules and spend time enjoying the freedoms that this country has to offer, remember, Freedom is not free.

If you can read, thank a teacher. Because we can still read in English, thank a Soldier. There are many things occurring that will impact us in the coming months: The Operations along the Gulf Coast are ongoing and will continue. Water Survival Class will be offered in Pell City on Friday, June 4, 2010. This is a requirement for all aircrew members for any off shore mission. The Hurricane Season is almost here. The Counter Drug season has started. The Tornado Season is here. Military Training Routes still need to be flown and surveyed. The Air Force will do their annual census of the Civil Air Patrol on June 30, 2010. Our funding will be determined based on the number of Mission Pilots and Mission Observers on that date. There will be opportunities to get qualified for Mission Scanner, Mission Observer, and Mission Pilot during the month of June. Please try to participate as much as you can. Captain James T. Gosnell Squadron Commander, 118


their seat belts (pretend that it is the life vest of driving). Put the children in the back, the stats are overwhelming when front seat safety for kids is compared to back seat placement. Avoid fatigue when traveling. Get plenty of fresh air, avoid heavy food (and, of course, alcohol altogether), take frequent rest stops, and sleep in a hotel not your car! Get the rest your body demands. And, of course, the great weather will induce many of us to do that home maintenance that we have been putting off for months. Use common safety procedures when doing these chores, especially if they involve ladders or electrical tools. Outdoor cooking continues to account for many minor burn accidents and some serious ones. Be sure to use charcoal lighter fluid to start the fire not gasoline, move the grill away from any structures, and always monitor the grill especially if any children are around. Be sure the coals are completely out and cooled before disposing of them. I know that you can think of a dozen other good summer practices to help make your fun in the sun a pleasant and not a tragic experience. If so, be a good wingman, if your friend or others have a lapse in judgment or they are about to do something risky, jump in and help them to avoid injury and worse.

First Lieutenant Ron Harlan

Safety Corner:
Summer is here! Well, not officially until later in June but with the past Memorial Day weekend, most of us have kicked off our summer activities already. This brings to mind our seasonal “101 Critical Days of Summer” reminders. As most of you know, the armed services found some time ago that their members suffered a sharp rise in off-duty accidents during the time from Memorial Day to Labor Day and they instituted training and reminders to help keep them safe while having fun. The other day, I saw an article on boating accidents in AL that said that fatalities this year had already tripled from this time last year. Maybe everyone felt a little more broke last year and left their boats in the shed more. Another article stated that Coast Guard data from 2008 showed that 90% of all fatal boating accidents involved individuals not wearing a life vest. Imagine that one thing as simple as wearing a life vest could help prevent such a high number of deaths! I know a lot of our area residents enjoy the fantastic water facilities that we have locally, and well they should. Just follow the waterway rules, don’t overload the vessel, use life vests, and check the weather and good safe fun can be had by all! Many of us will also embark on an extended driving trip sometime this summer and some of the precautions that help make this safer are just good common sense. Always make sure everyone wears -2-

Stay Safe! Ronald Harlan, Safety Officer/Squadron 118

Cadets Page

Operational Risk Management (ORM). Male and female campsites were established and the training began. The first order of business was to set up camp. The scouts and cadets received a demonstration on building a natural shelter by C/CMSgt. Jerrod Finlay. Finlay is GT1 rated, a NESA trained first responder and is preparing to qualify as a team leader. He and C/Cpt. Peter Randolph also provided a First Aid Refresher. Other types of shelters such as tents, tarps and hammocks were also erected. The scouts in turn provided a demonstration of the proper way to build a fire, to the new cadets. Lectures on Scene Management and Landing Zone preparation were also given.

Group photo with Alabama Life Saver, operated by Omniflight

Crossing Boundaries
The Civil Air Patrol has long been known as a service oriented organization. It is common knowledge that CAP has 3 main missions (Aerospace Education, Emergency Services, and Cadet Programs). What is not common knowledge however, is how individual squadrons choose to amplify their mission within the community. Individually and collectively our members have a heart for selfless service to others, whether in uniform or not. On the weekend of May 14-15, the Pell City Composite Squadron, SER-AL-118, crossed their boundaries and reached out to another service organization in the community by providing training to Boy Scout Troop 514. The scouts were in need of training in certain skills relating to search and rescue. This training would allow them to receive merit badges needed to proceed with their advancement. Most of the Pell City cadets are trained in emergency services at the ground team 3 (GT3) level. Approximately half have achieved the advanced level of GT1 or above. There are also three Senior Members who are Team Leader rated. Since some of the Pell City cadets are also Boy Scouts, it seemed only natural that CAP would offer to help where possible. It would also be a good opportunity to introduce new cadets to Emergency Services. After weeks of planning the cadets, scouts, and leaders descended onto the property of Ken and Cassie Padgett near Pell City, Alabama. The Padgett’s do not have any cadets or scouts but are caring people who are willing to help. Upon arrival, the coordinator, Major John Randolph introduced Scout Master Dean Speers, Dr. Lewis and other scout leaders to the Deputy Commander for Cadets, Cpt. Cindy Bennett. After a few ground rules were laid down, the Safety Officer, 1LT Eddie Shurbutt gave a safety brief which included a short lecture on

Although the objective of the weekend was primarily to train scouts, it was an excellent opportunity to test the experienced ground team members. A Distress beacon was placed on the property and two scout leaders were asked to act as victims of a plane crash. At this point a mission was announced for the ground team members to locate the beacon and assist any victims at the site. The team picked a leader and began using the ELPER to locate the signal being sent from the beacon. A reading was taken and a bearing plotted. After moving about a hundred yards another reading was taken. It was obvious that the signal was coming from the wooded area however it becomes very difficult to search in the woods with an ELPER, especially at night. Ground teams are trained to use whatever resources are available to them. This includes radios and cell phones. In this case, a 2 meter band radio was available and it was tuned to the 121.775 Mhz. frequency being used to carry the distress beacon signal. This allowed the team to search in the wooded area without the risk of damaging the antennas of the ELPER. After a few minutes of body blocking (a search technique used at close range), the team came within close proximity of the distress beacon. However, even though it was very dark, a team member located a victim of the mock crash. At this point mission base was informed and the team leader took action to determine if the scene was safe for the rescuers to enter. It was declared safe and this triggered the process of caring for the victim. He received first aid and was questioned about other possible victims. It was discovered that another victim was also in the woods. A hasty search was performed and the other victim was located and treated as well. At this point the search for the distress beacon resumed. It was found and silenced. Mission complete. Upon return to the camp, C/2LT Trent Johnson briefed the cadets and scouts on CQ duties and it was time for lights out.


Reveille came early at 0600. After breakfast it was time for more training. C/2LT Rachel Shurbutt and C/Cpt. Peter Randolph gave instruction on basic search techniques while Cpt. Bennett gave instruction on Direction Finding using the ELPER. Cadets Wesley Morris, Brian Scott, and Danny Smith provided support as team leaders and training advisors. At this point in the day, the cadets and scouts were treated to a special event. The Alabama Life Saver helicopter, operated by Omniflight provided a fly in near the campsite. The three person crew provided lectures and answered many questions on the duties and operations of a flying ambulance/trauma room. A big thanks to pilot Dan Smith, nurse Lezlie Boswell and paramedic Jamie “Big Luv” Jackson for providing wonderful encouragement to the group to learn and grow with a heart for helping others. The pilot also lectured on what he expected from us as a ground team in preparation for his landing at an accident site. He also spoke of the dangers involved with helicopters. After a few rescue stories the crew boarded the helicopter and returned to service. But not before a couple of fly bys that highlighted the pilot’s 45 years of experience. The next activity for the day was for the cadets and scouts to use the ELPER to locate a distress beacon and to provide assistance to any victims found at the mock crash site. One of the scout’s tasks was to provide for extracting a victim from the woods. Dr. Lewis, the scout’s medical officer was to follow the team and evaluate their actions. Lack of experience is one of the worst enemies of the first responder. The new cadets and Boy Scouts soon found how important it is to get the proper training and follow up with exercises. The DF work proved to be difficult in the surrounding terrain. After locating the victims, again they saw the importance of training. It is easy for someone who is conscious to tell you where it hurts. It isn’t so easy however for you to perform triage in the forest and determine the best care for multiple patients who are unconscious. After further instruction by Dr. Lewis and 1LT Shurbutt, Cadet Morris determined that it was unsafe for the team to try to litter carry the victims down the mountain side. This was a good call. Our squadron Safety Officer often is heard to say, “Don’t become the victim.” It is sometimes better to report your situation and wait for more help to arrive. The scouts were allowed to put the victim on a litter and explain what they would do to extract the victim, if it were safe. In this way, they met the requirements for their merit badges. During the after action review, Scout Master Dean Speers had some closing remarks. He was very impressed by the attention to detail and the level of professionalism of the cadets. He was very pleased with the training that the Boy Scouts had received. He also commented on the character of the cadets and

applauded the senior members for their work in preparing the cadets for service. It should also be noted that Boy Scout Troop 514 was a very receptive and well mannered group of young men. A big thanks to all who participated in the planning and execution of the weekend. A special thanks to Omniflight for allowing their crew to add value to the training. It is a true testament to what can be accomplished when various organizations are willing to lend a helping hand by crossing boundaries. Eddie Shurbutt, 1LT Assistant Safety Officer Pell City Composite Squadron AL-118

Receiving instructions on performing a line search.

Lecture on the Life Saver mission


Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful