Civil Air Patrol wings to participate in hurricane preparedness exercise
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. — Members of Civil Air Patrol’s Texas and Louisiana wings will participate May 2-9 in a training scenario involving a hurricane striking Texas from the Gulf of Mexico – one stage of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command's Ardent Sentry 12 homeland security and disaster response exercise.
In the Texas-based scenario, the hurricane first makes landfall near Brownsville, blows back out to the Gulf and then hits the upper Texas coast, wreaking major damage to infrastructure.
The area command post will be staffed by members from National Headquarters, Southwest Region and Texas Wing staff in Denton. Incident command posts will operate in Houston and San Antonio and in Alexandria, La.
Elsewhere, Ardent Sentry 12 will include field training events in Alaska, Connecticut, North Dakota, Oregon and Nova Scotia, Canada, involving U.S. and Canadian military units and responses to such simulated disasters as a nuclear weapons incident at an Air Force base and an air crash in a remote area, as well as other weather-related calamities.
Ardent Sentry is held annually to sharpen the readiness skills of local, state and national organizations in responding to national-level emergencies, including natural disasters and terrorism incidents.
CAP, the U.S. Air Force auxiliary, regularly takes part in Ardent Sentry and other homeland security and disaster response exercises across the nation, assisting local, state and national organizations with crisis and terrorism preparedness. Most recently, CAP participated March 28-29 in Operation Falcon Virgo, an airborne intercept mission conducted over Washington, D.C., to test the Air Force's threat-intercept procedures.
Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with more than 61,000 members nationwide, operating a fleet of 550 aircraft. CAP, in its Air Force auxiliary role, performs 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and was credited by the AFRCC with saving 54 lives in fiscal year 2011. Its volunteers also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. The members play a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to nearly 27,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet program. CAP received the World Peace Prize in 2011 and has been performing missions for America for more than 70 years. CAP also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans. Visit www.gocivilairpatrol.com or www.capvolunteernow.com for more information.