Air Force, Army Work Together on Afghanistan Rescue Exercise
Airmen and soldiers recently combined forces in Afghanistan to conduct a personnel recovery exercise to gauge their ability to work together, the Defense Department said. In the exercise, an 83rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron Guardian Angel team flew in an Army CH-47F Chinook helicopter to pull simulated casualties from a downed aircraft. “The interoperability between the US Army and the US Air Force, by way of the CH-47F, has enabled our Guardian Angel teams to effectively conduct a wide variety of personnel rescue operations in ways not previously attainable,” Air Force Maj. Robert Wilson, 83rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron commander, said. The CH-47F gives the Guardian Angel team more ability to recover a larger number of isolated personnel and the ability to fly farther and higher than they could previously, the Pentagon said. CH-47 Chinooks took over the rescue mission from USAF Pave Hawks based at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, in October 2017, but shortly after transitioning out of the country USAF sent HH-60Gs back to Afghanistan as part of the United States’ increased operational tempo there.