ISS1 2018

Reservist Magazine is the award-winning official publication of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Quarterly issues include news and feature articles about the men and women who comprise America's premier national maritime safety and security

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and reduced the potential for stagnation and crew disengagement. The use of these scenarios served to test and expose the crew to real- world situations that they might encounter while serving in their maritime security role. "Usually with exercises, the biggest challenge is time. If there's a problem with comms, equipment or assignments, the clock continues to run," said Cripe. "But whatever the issues were, we had the engagement necessary to start the next scenario. All the crews really performed well and we were able to keep things moving to accomplish all of our objectives. Despite the many moving parts and players, communications were stable. This capability afforded the officers and chiefs the unique opportunity to step into the position of tactical actions officer, a critical command and control role. The TAO maintains control of PSU assets at all times, and that officer has the authority to direct the operational action in any situation the crews encounter during the deployment. These situations could range from routine vessel traffic to heavily armed hostile threats. In addition to their primary functions within the unit, all officers and chiefs will routinely stand watch as a TAO while deployed. "The TAO is like the quarterback," said Rodriguez. "In order for them to be effective, they need to learn how to manage all their resources and comms. When we rotate officers and chiefs through that role, it gives them the opportunity to learn how their shipmates work, communicate and speak when they're in a stressful environment. Managing people is easier than managing people under stress. We test that, and we learn from it." Coast Guard Pacific Area Reserve Chief of Staff Capt. Mark Murakami had the opportunity to observe the exercise site. He got underway with the waterside security, and he spoke with unit members manning both the battle positions and the Joint Operations Center. During the after-action discussion, Murakami said how impressed he was with the exercise, and he conveyed his sincere appreciation for their hard work, pride and energy. The captain said the success of the exercise serves as another example of how Coast Guard reservists continue to be relevant today. The commanding officer of the PSU, Cmdr. Laila Grassley, voiced her pride as well. "I can't tell you how proud I am of my crew. From the planners to the operators to the logisticians, it's good to see how proficient they are, but even better, how well they work as a team." PSU 311 is an expeditionary warfare unit whose tradition of maritime security missions abroad dates back to 1995. Since the unit's commissioning, they have executed a variety of security missions in numerous countries, including Cuba, Bahrain, Kuwait, Iraq and South Korea. PSU 311 continues to shine as a beacon of Reserve excellence as they train, build and guard that peace. — Story by PSU 311 Members of Port Security Unit 311 gather with for a pre-brief prior to the start of a field training exercise in preparation for their upcoming overseas deployment Jan. 20. Utilizing portable communication stations, PSU 311's highly proficient and motivated communications division kept this operational exercise together, despite the many moving parts and players. Issue 1 • 2018 � RESERVIST 13

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