|Story & photo by Rob Schuette, Public
Additional maintenance courses, improved training areas and new off-site
training opportunities are on the agenda for Fort McCoy’s Regional
Training Site (RTS)-Maintenance this training year. Fort McCoy is the
site of one of the four Army Reserve RTS-Maintenance facilities, with
the others located at Fort Devens, Mass.; Fort Hood, Texas; and Fort
Indiantown Gap, Pa.
Students in a Regional Training
Site-Maintenance class perform a protective maintenance check on
a Light Medium Tactical Vehicle.
Maj. Matt Jenkins, RTS-Maintenance commandant, said the organization
will teach its signature Series 91 (heavy wheeled mechanic) Career
Management Field, has two Additional Skill Identifier (ASI) courses,
Standard Army Maintenance System – Enhanced, Air Conditioning (AC) 609
and Additional Duty Armor Course for the next training year. ASI courses
include Wheeled Vehicle Recovery (H8) and Laundry and Electrical Systems
“We offer year-round courses from the Noncommissioned Officer Education
Courses, maintenance Military Occupational Skills training and ASI
instruction,” Jenkins said. “Our higher headquarters, the 80th Total
Army School System (TASS), uses assets at Fort McCoy and other Army
Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Kelley, an RTS-Maintenance senior instructor,
said the organization is acquiring a new, improved vehicle-recovery
training site. The new facility, being constructed on North Post, will
have a bigger work area and improved mire pits.
Kelley said this will allow better maneuverability for vehicle-recovery
operations. The pits allow for realistic training scenarios. To recover
a vehicle, the students must perform mathematic computations using
vehicle weight, size and load capacity to recover any tactical vehicle
using block and tackles and other recovery equipment. The students
determine the safe and proper method to retrieve a mired (stuck) vehicle
and then perform actual recovery operations.
A mire pit has the added benefit of being environmentally safe, Kelley
said. Any spill is contained within the pit for easier containment and
cleanup. This reduces the environmental impact. This training is highly
valuable to successfully complete missions and in high demand in
In the past, RTS-Maintenance has been able to send Mobile Training Teams
(MTT) to a unit’s location to train. Staff Sgt. Daniel Schauf,
RTS-Maintenance senior instructor, and other members of the
RTS-Maintenance MTT staff have provided training in Pennsylvania, New
York, Maine and Kentucky, as well as Puerto Rico.
Jenkins said, “We were chosen as the premier location site by the
Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command to create a much needed EPA
certified air conditioning course called AC 609. Many Army units are
requesting air conditioning repair and training as they use vehicles
with this system during deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan.”
“We’ve trained National Guardsmen and Reserve Soldiers at their unit
training equipment sites, and also at Army Maintenance Support
Activities, Equipment Concentration Sites, Maneuver Area Training
Equipment Sites, and civilian shops, Jenkins said.
Schauf added, “We use the Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command training
video about air conditioning repair in various-sized vehicles, which was
videotaped and assembled at Fort McCoy in April 2010, to support the
RTS-Maintenance will be training active-duty Army personnel in the
future, he said. This incorporates the TASS mission.
Jenkins said RTS-Maintenance is using the more modern installation
support facilities at Fort McCoy that have become more accessible since
the last Base Realignment and Closure Action. This includes the
availability of billeting in building 51, which is convenient for
students in the RTS-Maintenance training courses.
For more information about RTS-Maintenance courses, call the
organization at 608-388-3938.