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For Immediate Release
March 09, 2016

New York State Preparedness Training Center Hosts National Guard Infantry and Aviation Exercises, March 12-13

News Media Invited to Observe Training on Saturday, March 12, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

ORISKANY, N.Y.—The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) today announced that 200 citizen soldiers from the New York National Guard will conduct tactical and medical evacuation training at the New York State Preparedness Training Center (SPTC) in Oriskany, March 12-13. Operated by DHSES on the site of the former Oneida County Airport, the SPTC is the state’s premier training facility for New York’s first responders. Thousands of the state’s first responders representing EMS, law enforcement, bomb squad technicians and others receive training at the SPTC annually.

The members of the 2nd Battalion 108th Infantry will use the runways, some buildings, and the space available at the SPTC to prepare for a three-week exercise at Fort Polk, La., this summer.

“The New York National Guard plays a key role in the defense of our nation, as well as responding to snowstorms, hurricanes, and other natural disasters here in New York State,“ said New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner John P. Melville.  “I am pleased that Guardsmen and women can take advantage of this world class training facility to prepare for their military training exercises.”

The soldiers, who are based at armories in Utica, Gloversville and Leeds, will train in motor vehicle convoy operations, dismounted night movement using night vision goggles, assaulting an enemy position, the use of mortars, reconnaissance techniques and treating combat casualties and loading them on UH-60 medical evacuation helicopters during their weekend training.

On Saturday, March 12, two hundred New York Army National Guard soldiers will conduct tactical and casualty evacuation training that includes practice loading combat casualties into UH-60 air ambulance helicopters. National Guard participants on Saturday include 120 soldiers from Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion 108th Infantry located in Utica; 80 soldiers from Company C, 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, based in Gloversville; and two UH-60s and aircrew from F Company, 1st Battalion, 169th General Support Aviation Battalion, based in Rochester.

On Sunday, March 13, UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters from Company A,  3rd Battalion 142nd Aviation Battalion, based in Latham, will conduct training with the United States Army Reserve’s 403rd Civil Affairs Battalion from Mattydale at the SPTC.

“The New York State Preparedness Training Center provides a great location for our citizen soldiers to train in the Mohawk Valley,” said Major General Patrick Murphy, the Adjutant General of New York. “The center provides space to conduct complex training involving several hundred troops and facilities which allow our Soldiers to operate in built-up environments as well. “

“The State Preparedness Training Center's expansive 1,000 acre property, coupled with its wide array of training venues, offers the National Guard a world-class facility to conduct their exercises," added Commissioner Melville. "Built on the grounds of the former Oneida County Airport, the center's numerous outbuildings and hangers, and long runways, give the National Guard an ideal location to conduct training exercises out of the public eye."

News media can observe the training and talk with National Guard officials on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the SPTC. Media that wish to attend should contact Capt. Jean Marie Kratzer, 42nd CAB Public Affairs Officer, at 518-786-4581 or 518-496-7150.

About the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services

The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services and its four offices -- Counter Terrorism, Emergency Management, Fire Prevention and Control, and Interoperable and Emergency Communications --  provide leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.

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