REDSTONE ARSENAL – For the second year in a row The Alabama National Guard 1103rd Sustainment Support Battalion worked with the U.S Army Redstone Test Center to implement Project Clean Sweep.
Cpt. Alexandra Strang with the Alabama National Guard says this isn’t just disposing of small materials, “It involves the disposal of millions of dollars of remnants that accumulate from testing. These remnants involve the necessary paperwork, coordination with the Defense Logistics Agency, and proper transportation to the DLA at Anniston Army Depot.”
The project started last year when the National Guard helped remove 12 years worth of remnants totaling 145 tons. This year, they removed 178 tons of equipment and other remnants from testing valued at $20 million.
As a sign of appreciation, Rick Rivera, Chief of Staff for Redstone Testing presented the soldiers with coins as a thank you for the removal.
Staff Sergeant Courtney Howard with unit 1670, a transportation company out of Brundage, Alabama, said this is more than just helping out the testing center.
“It gives us good experience as truck drivers, gives us good experience on equipment, how to load it, how to strap it down. It gives the new people from basic experience that they’re just coming into the unit, we have a lot of those with us. It gives them good hands-on experience right away,” Howard said.
Using the Army National Guard to move this saves taxpayers money because there is no need to hire commercial trucks and the National Guard gets training.
“This is real-world training for our companies, so it is paramount for us to be able to do this and it works both ways. We get training, they get work done so it’s mutually effective for both of us,” Strang said.
Because of how beneficial Operation Clean Sweep has been, the two are working together to make it a yearly event.