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109th Airlift Wing security forces conduct training exercise

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Jocelyn Tuller,
  • 109th Air Wing Public Affairs

SCOTIA, N.Y. – Security forces from the 109th Airlift Wing trained March 5 on how and when to use force, facilitated by instructors who controlled the scenarios and ensured safety was the top priority.

The purpose was to put the security forces in a situation where they had to use each level on the “use of force continuum.” That continuum guides law enforcement and civilians on how much force to use against a resisting subject.

“We do these exercises because it is important for defenders to have hands-on experience dealing with each level of force,” said Tech. Sgt. William Brady, a swing shift flight chief. “Actually, shooting a Taser at someone is a lot different than learning in a classroom.”

During the exercise, groups of two Guard members would enter a building. In each scenario, security forces members played the “bad guy.”

In the first scenario, the aggressor wore a red, padded suit for his protection and the weapon used was a baton.

“The suit is padded and easy to maneuver in for protection,” Brady said.

The second scenario included two service members wearing full-body Taser suits, which are harder to move in but protect the person from feeling the Taser. The training Taser cannot penetrate the material of the suit.

In the third and final scenario, two members had weapons, including a reported gun, and the security forces members had airsoft guns to simulate deadly force.

All participants wore face protection, eye protection and head protection for safety.

Airmen spent the first half of the day in a classroom learning about each level of force and how to know when to use them. This was to ensure everyone was as safe as possible during the exercise.

“Anytime there was a safety issue, we ended the exercise immediately,” Brady said. “At the end of each scenario, we debriefed each group, discussing what they could have done better and what they did well.”

Training exercises on this level occur a few times a year, and the security forces squadron personnel do different exercises on shift and after hours.

“We want our team to always be ready whether they are stateside or in a deployed environment,” Brady said. “We want them to be comfortable using each level of force.”