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Officer John Harris, Colorado Springs Police Department, Sand Creek Division and Staff Sgt. Casey Lemieux, Colorado Air National Guard 137th Space Warning Squadron in Greely, Colo. discuss security operations in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Colorado Army and Air National Guard are operating under the Governor’s executive order to assist the incident management team and local agencies in fire relief efforts and provide safety and security for residents affect by the Waldo Canyon fire. (Official Army National Guard photo by Army 2nd Lt. Skye Robinson, Colorado National Guard)(RELEASED)

Click here or on the photo for a high-resolution image. For more imagery of National Guard forces supporting relief efforts, visit us on Flickr

Monday, July 2, 2012

Air National Guard Capt. Darin Overstreet

CENTENNIAL, Colo. (7/02/12)The Colorado Army and Air National Guard is providing ongoing support to civil authority in Colorado Springs, Colo. In total, more than 250 Citizen-Soldiers and Citizen-Airmen have supported the response efforts.

National Guard Soldiers from the COARNG, B Company 1st Battalion 157th Infantry from Fort Lupton, Colo., participating as part of  Joint Task Force Security, are manning 12 traffic control points and four security check points alongside Colorado Springs, Colo., Police Officers. 

Summarized from the Army Military Police Handbook a traffic control point is used to limit the flow of traffic in and out of a specified area so that essential movement is not restricted.

Secuity Forces Airmen from the 140th Wing, COANG, Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora, Colo., are riding along side Colorado Springs Police officers and providing security to the incident command post, the staging area, and spike camps.

Authorized by the Governor’s executive order these additional forces help to reduce the workload of civil authorities around the affected area of the fire and allow police forces to focus on additional troubled areas around the city of Colorado Springs.

“There have been crimes committed in and around the affected area,” said Deputy Chief of Police Mark Smith. “These Guardsmen will augment our officers.”

According to Smith, the officers have come from all different jurisdictions which has left the police force thin. The National Guard will help restore their ranks and allow for more law enforcement in other parts of the city.

A COARNG UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter with a crew of three Colorado Army National Guardsmen from the 2 Battalion 135th General Support Aviation , part of Task Force Aviation, have been released from BamBi Bucket® operations by the Air Boss and Incident Commander, as they feel the additional asset is no longer required. Should requirements again exceed the capacity of the civilian aviation assets, the Colorado National Guard will be ready to support. To date this COARNG air asset dropped 127 buckets, 58,420 gallons of water onto the Waldo Canyon fire.

The High Park fire was announced as 100% contained therefore, COARNG Task Force Security elements supporting this fire will be released from duty this afternoon.

During a 8 a.m. press conference at the Waldo Canyon Incident Command Post this morning Army National Guard Lt. Col. Bren Rogers, Task Force Security Commander,  updated the media and community members on her troops involvement with relief efforts.

The Colorado Joint Operations Center is continuously monitoring the fire situation around Colorado and neighboring states.

National Guard and Active Duty have been seamlessly working hand-in-hand for more than 10 years as a total force concept in overseas contingencies. Helping our friends, families and fellow citizens is a valuable and natural extension of that partnership.