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164th Airlift Squadron survives Water Survival Training

  • Published
  • By TSgt Joe Harwood
  • 179AW Public Affairs
The 164th Airlift Squadron aircrew has to be trained for every scenario, good or bad. Water survival training is part of that training, and refresher courses are a crucial part of staying sharp for any scenario. This year, the aircrew members accomplished the training at the Galion YMCA pool, Galion, OH, April 6, 2014.
164th Airlift Squadron member, Maj. Jeremy Ford, said "This is crucial re-occurring training. Not only does it prepares the aircrew to navigate the situation to save themselves in the event of an emergency water landing, but also how to handle any passengers we may have at the time."
The airmen of the 179th Operations Group Airmen Equipment Flight provide the training to the C-130H aircrew. The aircrew members don't get into swimming suits for a dip in the pool, instead they simulate how a water landing would have them, swimming in uniform. They must remain calm and be familiar with their gear, prepare to release themselves from a parachute that is dragging them through the water and be able navigate their way out from beneath it, all while they are in the water. Kicking and tangling parachute lines around you could be your last mistake. Their personal life preservers are inflated and not only are they are instructed on how to operate their personal flotation devices but also on how to use the group's life raft as a signaling device to attract help and remain hidden to avoid enemy detection. The end result of this training is to re-enforce tactics for an emergency that the 164th Airlift Squadron aircrews are highly trained to avoid.
179th Operations Group Airmen Equipment Flight instructor, Tech. Sgt. William Hamilton, said "First of all, we're grateful for the opportunity the folks here, at the Galion YMCA, have given us by allowing us to use their facilities to conduct the Water Survival Training." Hamilton added, "Second, I'd also like to thank the aircrew for being good sports during the training, taking it in stride, and for taking it seriously. Hopefully, the need should never arise for the training we've given them, but I'm confident they'll be ready."