Home' Army News : December 8th 2011 Contents 26 TRAINING
Army December 8, 2011
By LCpl Mark Doran
AS THE summer disaster season
approaches, 44 soldiers are bet-
ter prepared for relief operations
and coordinating with civil agen-
cies after joining more than 200
international troops for Exercise
Suman Warrior in the UK.
Commanded by CO 10FSB
Lt-Col Phil McMaster, and mostly
from 17CSSB, the exercise
participants were trained
in providing military aid
to civil authorities during
crises such as flooding and
This year is the
40th anniversary of the
Five Powers Defence
Australia, the UK, New
Zealand, Singapore and
Malaysia, which all had
troops taking part in the annual
Lt-Col McMaster said Exercise
Suman Warrior was an excellent
opportunity for nations to share
experiences of conducting humani-
tarian aid and disaster relief opera-
"Australia was significantly
affected by floods and severe tropical
cyclones over the December 2010 to
February 2011 period," he said.
"In reality, the other nations par-
ticipating have experienced similar
situations. This was an excellent
forum to learn from each other's
Participants in Exercise Suman
Warrior heard from leading experts
in contingency planning and emer-
gency response and took part in a
three-day problem-solving exercise
using the knowledge they gained.
The exercise simulated the dev-
astating effects of flooding on resi-
dential and industrial areas to train
troops and emergency services to
Maj Keith Chambers, 10FSB,
was the contingent XO and said
Exercise Suman Warrior exposed the
troops to a new way of dealing with
civilian agencies when a combined
military and civil response to natural
disasters was required.
"The exposure to the detailed and
well rehearsed natural disaster pro-
cedures that the UK has in place was
an eye opener," Maj Chambers said.
"We all now have a much better
understanding of the complexities of
joint disaster relief operations."
The contingent was hosted by 15
(North East) Bde, the largest regional
brigade in the UK, and was based
at the Queen Elizabeth
Barracks in Strensall.
The exercise began with
a formal opening ceremo-
ny and parade at Queen
Elizabeth Barracks where
the flags of the participat-
ing countries were raised
and their national anthems
were played by the Heavy
Cavalry and Cambrai Band.
Pte Joshua Raines,
17CSSB, said it was an
excellent exercise that he believed
was highly beneficial to everyone
"Seeing how foreign militaries
operate really opens your mind to
different ideas and shows you new
ways to do things," he said.
"The floods in Australia earlier
this year highlight the importance of
such an exercise and I think we are
now better equipped to deal with any
"Seeing how foreign
militaries operate really
opens your mind to
different ideas and shows
you new ways to do things."
-- Pte Joshua Raines, 17CSSB
Civil aid: Australian participants in Ex Suman Warrior look on as an RAF
rescue helicopter touches down at Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Strensall, UK.
Inset, mock media coverage adds to the realism of exercise scenarios.
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