Photo Information

A Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear specialist with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit suits up in preparation for a training exercise here Feb. 4. Fifteen Marines with the MEU took part in a three week CBRN assessment and consequence management course designed to better prepare the Marines with possible threats during their upcoming deployment.

Photo by Sgt. Scott M. Biscuiti

11th MEU specialists seal up from dangerous goods

5 Feb 2009 | Sgt. Bryson K. Jones 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit

Fifteen 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit ground-combat Marines here recently practiced protecting and decontaminating themselves to stay in the fight during dangerous-goods attacks or incidents.

The group from Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines, the MEU’s ground-combat element, attended a three-week assessment-and-consequence management course taught by 1st Marine Division to Marine air-ground task-force members.

In field exercises – one at a waste-water treatment facility and others in simulated urban environments – students got practical experience using state-of-the-art suits and decontamination equipment.

The off-the-shelf civilian gear is designed specifically for chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats.

“We are officially the second MEU to use this new equipment,” said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Gary Reed, who is in charge or preparing the 11th MEU for such threats.

The gear was bulky and hot, but Pfc. James Mayo, a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear specialist, said the students accomplished a lot as a team and are familiarized and ready to support the MEU.

Instructor and trainer Lance Cpl. James Day, 1st Marine Division, said the suits, which are also used by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency, are easier to use and more comfortable than standard military gear.

“These suits are better equipped for all scenarios dealing with the range of (hazardous materials),” said Day.

The MEU, a Marine air-ground task-force of 2,200 service members, is gearing up for a Western-Pacific deployment later this year.

Marine Corps News

Colonel Thomas M. Siverts
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Colonel Tom Siverts is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in August 1989. He achieved a commission as a Second Lieutenant through the Marine Corps Enlisted Commissioning Education Program following his graduation from the University of Virginia in May 1999. Colonel Siverts has deployed in support of Operations DESERT SHIELD, DESERT STORM, IRAQI FREEDOM, and ENDURING FREEDOM. His other operational deployments include serving with Battalion Landing Team (BLT) 2/8, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU); BLT 3/8, 22d MEU; BLT 2/8, 26th MEU, and Task Force 61/2.

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Lieutenant Col. Steven M. Sprigg
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LtCol Sprigg was born in Parkersburg, WV. LtCol Sprigg enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in September 2004 and recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, SC. LtCol Sprigg was selected for the Enlisted Commissioning Program and commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in March 2008. He was designated a Naval Aviator in February 2011 and reported to HMLAT-303 for training as an AH-1W pilot. LtCol Sprigg is currently serving as the Executive Officer for the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit in Camp Pendleton, California.

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Sergeant Major Travis L. DeBarr
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