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Ellsworth participates in accident response exercise

ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. -- The 28th Bomb Wing participated in a Major Accident Response Exercise March 3 to 6 in Belle Fourche, S.D.

This exercise was designed to test the wing’s ability to respond to an aircraft accident outside of the installation.

“We were able to study the details of a similar incident several years ago to help us focus on where possible shortfalls may be,” said Mark Schlichte, the 28th BW inspector general. “We were also able to exercise almost every function on base, from operations and maintenance, to numerous support functions and medical [operations].”

The exercise also demonstrated Ellsworth’s partnership with the South Dakota National Guard and the Civil Air Patrol in response to a simulated aircraft crash.

“It was an excellent exercise that allowed many agencies to practice their skills and coordinate their efforts across the Ellsworth team, as well as interact with our community partners,” Schlichte said.

The data gathered during exercises allows commanders to strengthen their processes and procedures for dealing with similar incidents in the future.

“Our focus is to make us better prepared to accomplish the mission,” Schlichte said. “These exercises make us better.”

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