The capabilities of personnel from the RAAF’s security forces have been showcased during live-fire exercises conducted in NSW.
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The Royal Australian Air Force’s No. 1 Security Forces Squadron, based at RAAF Base Williamtown, has engaged in live-fire training operations as part of Exercise Gathering Storm, set up to test the capabilities of personnel supporting flying squadrons and wings of Air Force across a range of environments.
The activities, conducted at the Singleton military training area in NSW, included supporting a single C-17A Globemaster mission in an uncertain environment and a small air task group operating in the region.
“Exercise scenarios followed the train-the-battle-shot methodology, moving from individual live fire or in some cases individual and patrol dog tactical training through multi-team tactics,” Commanding Officer No. 1 Security Forces Squadron Wing Commander Craig Montgomery said.
The squadron leveraged airbase counter-intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities, which involved military working dog teams and sniper support.
Personnel also drew from command, control, communication and computer ISR capabilities, with Air Force security and air defence guard personnel monitoring potential threats by utilising both ground and air surveillance.
“Additionally, our response force, comprising a quick-reaction force together with heavy weapon team, provided tactical support to securing and maintaining control of the battlespace,” WGCDR Montgomery added.
“Exposure to the full spectrum of operational scenarios is essential to retain the strength of our capability.”
WGCDR Montgomery lauded the performance of personnel, who he said demonstrated “skill, agility and professionalism” both individually and collaboratively.
No. 1 Security Forces Squadron hosted a number of guests to observe the exercise, including Officer Commanding No. 81 Wing Group Captain Matthew McCormack and Officer Commanding No. 95 Wing Group Captain Andrew McHugh.
The squadron also engaged with honorary commanders of the Hunter Defence Support Network in a bid to strengthen the partnership between RAAF Williamtown and the wider Hunter area.
Exercise Gathering Storm forms part of the force-generation program undertaken by No. 1 Security Forces Squadron in the lead up to follow-on exercises including Rogue Ambush, Talisman Sabre and Pitch Black.