TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — More than 300 Air Force Civil Engineers from across the globe are at Tyndall Air Force Base competing in a readiness challenge.
“It’s involving eight different major commands,” Expeditionary Engineering Division Chief Khary Davis said. “We brought them here to do an assessment of our wartime skills, training our contingency requirements, and also doing an assessment of unit readiness.”
Officials said it’s an opportunity to test the military’s reaction for future emergencies.
This is the first Readiness Challenge since 2000.
“We became very focused on OIF operation, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, which kicked off in 2001 so that kind of took the center stage for quite a while,” said Chad Lepley, the Air Force Civil Engineer Center’s Readiness Senior Enlisted Leader.
Lepley said they’re trying to get into a more deliberate style of training.
Each team consists of 40 air force civil engineers. They compete all week in mini competitions like rapid damage repair to the airfield.
They also have to build guard shacks in very little time.
The engineers are judged on both their speed and skill.
“So we can look at the outcome of any of our events here and say that yes, units are being validated, they are able to meet those wartime requirements,” Davis said. “If we see any gaps and we say, ‘you know what we want to be better in this area, we’ve proven that we have room to improve.’ That allows us to go back to our curriculum, our training platforms and ensure that they’re meeting that warfighter need.”
On Friday, the AF Cat commander will name this year’s readiness challenge winner at the closing ceremony.