NEWS | Jan. 24, 2011

Soldiers and Airmen work together to complete refueling mission

By Staff Sgt. Kimberly Moore Joint Task Force-Bravo Public Affairs

Joint Task Force-Bravo conducted an unusual joint training mission Jan. 20.

While waiting to board a UH-60 Black Hawk, Army Forces' Petroleum, Oil and Lubricant personnel watched as 1-228th Aviation Regiment POL Soldiers fueled the aircraft that would take them to a Forward Area Refueling Point in Puerta Castilla where the two teams would train together.

ARFOR's mission is to exercise command control and provide logistical and administrative support for JTF-Bravo elements and other Army or joint operations conducted to enhance regional engagement and cooperative security.

"Operational fuel support is neither a 1-228 nor an ARFOR mission, it is a JTF-B mission," said 2nd Lt. Nicholas Kerner. "The 1-228 was kind enough to invite us on this training exercise and we were happy to join."

The 1-228th conducts general support aviation operations in support of JTF-Bravo and often utilizes this FARP during their missions.

After a few hours of flight training for pilots, CW2 Eric Hren and Capt. Peter Kuhlmann and co-pilots W01 Cameron Patterson and 1Lt Ky Fehlbaum,  the two Black Hawks landed and personnel exited and went straight to work.

Staged at Puerto Castillo were three 3K bags of fuel pre-positioned as a convenient refueling option to be utilized by JTF-B personnel while on missions.

POL members gathered and the 1-228th Soldiers immediately began instructing ARFOR Airmen on procedures for correctly connecting equipment and explaining how that particular system works.

Lieutenant Kerner said, "The 1-228th and ARFOR teams worked extremely well together, quickly and successfully establishing the FARP and ensuring that we were mission-capable."

"This was a great opportunity for JTF-B," he said. "The two teams working together epitomizes what we're doing here, supporting and conducting joint security and humanitarian operations throughout Central America."

Joint Task Force-Bravo supports U.S. interests in Central America through Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief efforts, Counter-Illicit Trafficking operations and multi-national joint training exercises.