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Picking, choosing and moving equipment

By Joycelyn Biggs | Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany | November 24, 2015

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Sending a mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle to the field for warfighters is a complex logistical effort that requires interdepartmental coordination and a lot of attention to detail. The Movement and Maintenance Branch personnel play a crucial role in that process.

Recently, Production Plant Albany requested Movement and Maintenance Branch employees to deliver an MRAP. Once received, the item will be rebuilt before delivery to the field.

Less than 24 hours after receiving the request, Movement and Maintenance Branch employees began the intricate process to deliver the equipment, according to Paul Williams, head of the Movement and Maintenance Branch, Marine Corps Logistics Command.

“It takes experience to move something like this,” William Palmer, engineering equipment operator, LOGCOM, said. “I have been doing this since 2007.” 

Experience is not the only criteria. Safety is a critical aspect in effectively moving large equipment from place to place. Safety is a must at all times, Derrick Bell, movement supervisor, LOGCOM, said.

“We have someone in the front and someone in the rear because the driver (sits) so high,” he said. “He is constantly looking to ensure he has sight of us and if he ever loses sight of either of us, he will stop movement.”

Bell added the team is also in constant communication with one another via two-way radios.

Although the equipment is huge and requires a lot of coordination, Bell explained that move was not as difficult as some others.

“This was a soft pick,” he said, noting that means if there are 10 of the requested type vehicle on the lot, the movement team chooses which one is sent.

“Of course we will choose the one that is easiest to get,” he said.

In other instances, a hard pick is required, which means a specific vehicle is requested and that is the one that must be delivered.

“When we have hard picks, we may have to move 20 other vehicles out of the way to reach the specified one,” Bell explained. “We really like a soft pick.”

Whether a soft pick or a hard pick, Williams stressed the process is always conducted in the most effective way, never compromising safety.

As he walked to his vehicle he said, “We will do it all over again with the next request.”
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