first published on November 14, 2015 by Will
Although the occupants of this vehicle were 88M Motor Transport Operators and not engineers, it got me thinking about the engineers with the Route Clearance Packages, and well just about any troop whose job is to regularly leave the wire, putting themselves in harm’s way.
Fortunately these guys walked away from something that could have easily killed them. Even though these vehicles are designed to take blasts, it doesn’t take away from the fact that they go out hunting these deadly devices, using themselves as detonators.
When I was in Afghanistan, we were taking too many casualties from IEDs in our deathtrap Humvees. It got so bad that we couldn’t roll without a route clearance package consisting of several engineer vehicles. The problem was, at that time, there were only two route clearance teams in our entire region.
It sucked for us because we got stranded at firebases for weeks, even months at a time. Yet, it must have sucked for those engineers more. They were constantly working and on the move. They would try to get in an hour or two of internet at the MWR before they had to roll back out. They were filthy, and they smelled terrible, just like the rest of the grunts and scouts.
These guys definitely have a dangerous and demanding job. They deserve our respect for doing what they do for our safety and for the mission.