Story by PO2 Chidi Amadi on 02/08/2018WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Naval District Washington (NDW) concluded its participation in the two-week anti-terrorism and force protection exercise Citadel Shield-Solid Curtain (CS-SC) 2018, Feb. 9.
Civilian and military personnel on Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Joint Base Anacostia River (JBAB), Naval Support Activity (NSA) Annapolis, NSA Bethesda, NSA South Potomac and NSA Washington took part in the annual training exercise conducted by Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC) and U.S. Fleet Forces Command (USFF). Each installation underwent realistic drills and training scenarios designed to help them maintain a high level of readiness.
"It was extremely successful," said Matthew Brown, NDW training and exercise director. "At the installation level some things went awry, but rom a training perspective at the region level, although we don't want things to go awry we have to conduct these exercises to find out when and where things do go wrong so that we can correct those issues now to be prepared for a real-world incident. When a real-world incident occurs we don't want to be saying how come we didn't know we had these communication challenges between these different organizations?' We find out what needs to be corrected by doing this exercise. We'll discuss all the issues and look across the enterprise from a regional perspective to see if there's any synergy we can correct and how help the installations when we conduct our after action and lessons learned meetings in short order."
Citadel Shield, which took place the first week of the two-week exercise, had installations and local emergency services respond to scenario that included active shooters, mass casualty events, improvised explosive devices, gate runners and suspicious packages.
The second week of the exercise, Solid Curtain, is a separate week-long training event run by USFF for their Maritime Operation Center. To simulate an actual major incident, the reserve support detachment was called in to assist.
"During a major level event, they'll be in here supporting our Crisis Action Team (CAT). They help run the region operation center (ROC) to aid us with the incident that's occurring. We have a blue and gold team and we can stand watches back and forth, but if it turns into a long term event we're going to need support to relieve our people. It's been a great opportunity for them and they've done a great job. They're probably as efficient at this as our own people," said Brown.
Reservists meet once a month to hone their crisis management skills and are also called upon during large scale exercises like CS-SC.
"We don't see each other often," said CDR KC Chhipwadia, commanding officer of the Navy Reserve NDW ROC. "The question is Are we ready? Are we as a team working properly together? What can we do to make sure we're brilliant on the basics and plug in where we're needed?'" We're ensuring that we're ready, but we're looking for the gaps and what we didn't prepare for. We want to find all those things that we didn't think about or prepare those so we can improve. The important things are what we learned and how we're going to fix that going forward."
Personnel are encouraged to sign up for the AtHoc alert network and follow the "If you see something, say something" rule in the case of witnessing any suspicious activity.
For more news and images of CS-SC 2018 and to stay up to date with events in NDW, visit www.facebook.com/NavDistWash.