Fort Bliss urges safety during massive exercise

Fort Bliss, US Army
Wednesday, July 24, 2013 - 10:48pm

A Soldier from 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, was seriously injured in a training accident July 11 at one of the installation’s ranges during a fire coordination exercise.

Two more Soldiers sustained minor injuries July 15 from a military vehicle collision.

“The First Armored Division and Fort Bliss are committed to providing the most realistic possible training to our Soldiers,” said Maj. Gen. Sean B. MacFarland, Fort Bliss and 1st Armored Division commander. “We work very hard to avoid training accidents and safety is always a top priority during these exercises. The installation is very focused on determining causes of any accidents and will do everything possible to keep it from happening again.”

As 3rd BCT, 1st AD, Soldiers conduct exercise Iron Focus in preparation for their upcoming deployment to Afghanistan, the Fort Bliss Safety Office urges them to maintain situational awareness.

Jose Moreno, deputy safety director, encourages Soldiers to be aware of their surroundings, the weather and ensure they get plenty of rest and nutrition. He adds they should avoid dehydrators such as coffee, energy drinks and nutritional supplements.

“It’s important that the Soldiers listen to their leadership and maintain standards. It is equally important for leadership to enforce safety standards,” said Moreno. “Wearing proper protective gear and working with a battle buddy (reduces the risk of injury).”

According to Moreno, Fort Bliss has had three fatalities already so far this year. He says that safety is a priority and following safety guidelines will continue to be emphasized.

The Safety Office is currently finalizing the new Fort Bliss commanding general’s safety directives for dissemination throughout the post. 

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