NEWS | Jan. 10, 2011

Rebuilding the fleet

By Staff Sgt. Kimberly Moore ARFOR PAO

When a shipment of wheeled tactical vehicles arrived at Soto Cano Air Base, Jan. 6, the Joint Task Force-Bravo Logistics team came one step closer to what the task force commander, Colonel Gregory Reilly, deemed "a significant accomplishment of regenerating our wheeled fleet."

Maj. Richard Lazik, director of logistics here, recognized the fleet's diminishing capabilities and the need for new equipment, so he coordinated with Army South and the U. S. Army Tank and Automotive Command to have JTF-B's rolling stock inspected.

Among the equipment inventoried were: High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Trucks, ambulances, tractor trailers and fuel tankers.

"The inspection took place in July, and the findings concurred the previous equipment was beyond life cycle management," Major Lazik said. "The average manufacturer date on the HMVEEs was 1988, that's older than some service members on Soto Cano."

According to Lazik, the new equipment began arriving in late November 2010, and deliveries will continue through the end of FY 11. Once JTF-B receives the equipment it is hand-receipted by the JTF-B Property Book Office to its appropriate unit. For example, ambulances are turned over to the base Medical Element.

"To date, we have replaced 37 out of 69 eligible pieces of rolling stock trucks and trailers," he said. "We've received 25 M1097 HMMWVs, seven M1025 Military Police HMMWVs, three M978A4 HEMTT's and two M969A3 fuel tankers."

JTF-B contributes to regional stability and peace, which facilitates economic prosperity and growth. U.S. forces at Soto Cano Air Base maintain the highest levels of proficiency and readiness to provide support capabilities for any mission, emergency or crisis.

"Upgrading the fleet is necessary for (JTF-B) to complete our mission. The new equipment and improves our readiness and ability to respond to support operations throughout the region."