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Postal clerk receives mail handling awareness training

By Nathan L. Hanks Jr. | Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany | September 18, 2015

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Cpl. Shada Middleton, postal clerk, Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, sorts through dozens of letters and packages daily.

One of her duties is to be able to identify a suspicious package as she conducts her day-to-day routine of mail delivery. 

To help Middleton maintain a keen eye for detection, she attended a mail handling awareness training class, Sept. 17.

“The course reiterates how to identify a suspicious package that may have toxic materials, how to handle it properly and how to make other postal workers and proper authorities aware of one if found,” Middleton said.

The training also helps ensure everyone knows the standard operating procedures and how to respond correctly, she added.

During the training, Middleton demonstrated how to properly wear her personal protection equipment, a mask and latex gloves, if she encountered a suspicious piece of mail.

Chris Batley, chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and high-yield explosives analyst and trainer, Camber Corporation, headquartered in Huntsville, Alabama, and part of the Regional CBRNE Equipment Training Team, from Jacksonville, North Carolina, conducted the refresher course.

“I support the Marine Corps in the installation protection program,” Batley said. “Basically, we train first responders on Marine Corps installations how to protect themselves, personnel and the installation from CBRNE attacks.

“Corporal Middleton has been through the class a few times, but it is always good to revisit the standard operating procedures, go over (places to meet during an emergency situation) and (reiterate) what to do in case you have suspicious package come through the mail,” Batley said.

He said the training course will help the Marines meet their annual requirement training.

Marvin Thomas, chemical protection officer, MCLB Albany, said the RCETT also provided training on the CBRNE Protection Program for first responders.

According to Thomas, first responders include the Marine Corps Police Department, MCLB Albany Fire Department and Naval Branch Health Clinic Albany.

“The RCETT provides training three times annually to MCLB Albany (personnel),” Thomas said. “This training consists of detection equipment operations, decontamination operations, chemical awareness, biological awareness, personal protection equipment, hazardous materials operations and scenario exercises.

“This training is key in keeping the base first responders and postal at a high rate of readiness for any situation,” he said.


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