Manama, BAHRAIN (NNS) -- Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 40 of Commander Task Force (CTF) 56 built a base camp Nov. 4 in Bahrain that provided the communications headquarters for a humanitarian assistance/disaster relief (HA/DR) exercise.
The exercise scenario required Coalition forces to provide HA/DR following a tropical cyclone that devastated a notional regional nation, destroying its critical infrastructure, shutting down its international airport, desalination and electrical plants, and displacing thousands of citizens. Additionally, the scenario included an oil spill from a damaged tanker at sea.
"We continuously train for these types of crisis scenarios," said Steel Worker 1st Class (SCW) Barry Roach, assistant officer in charge of NMCB-40. "It is part of our mission to be ready to deploy in the event that a situation comes up. We are always prepared to step in and do the best job that we can and this kind of experience is crucial to keeping us ready to go."
At the beginning of the exercise on Nov.1, NMCB-40 loaded equipment aboard USS Wasp (LHD 1), giving them the ability to send equipment ashore via landing craft units if needed.
Next they constructed a camp large enough to accommodate 200 staff and evacuees to serve citizens in need. They also provided the capability to reconstruct damaged roads or restore electricity to an area. Everything needed to maintain a tent camp was on hand by NMCB-40. They also brought in heavy equipment such as trucks, bulldozers and generators.
"This group of Seabees is a professional team with a can-do attitude," said Lt. Cory Woods, CTF 56 future operations officer. "We set up a camp and were able to give a quick response on the ground to begin making progress in the community. It's that quick presence that will let everybody know help is coming."
The crisis response exercise was conducted Nov. 1-7 to enhance crisis response capabilities should humanitarian and disaster relief assistance be requested from a regional nation.
For more news from Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet, visit www.news.navy.mil/local/cusnc/.