Hands On Approach Taken In Educating Japanese News Media At Afloat Training Group Western Pacific
YOKOSUKA, Japan - Thirteen Japanese journalists representing local and national Japanese news media along with Stars & Stripes were on board Commander, Fleet Activities, Yokosuka (CFAY) July 6 to participate in hands-on training to show how U.S. forward deployed forces stay mission ready.
Commanding Officer, Afloat Training Group, Western Pacific, Capt. Curtis J. Gilbert, lead the tour that included visits to the Center for Security Forces, the Center for Naval Engineering, and the Afloat Training Group command building. At the Center for Security Forces, a tour of both the live firing range and the firing simulator used for security force training was provided. When asked for volunteers, two journalists stepped forward and were outfitted with simulator weapons, then participated in an actual simulator generated scenario exercise.
At the Center for Naval Engineering's Damage Control/Firefighting Trainer, Sailors from USS Blue Ridge were observed going through basic firefighting, combating an actual fire.
Of particular note, Gilbert stressed the environmental protective systems employed that strictly ensure all fuel, firefighting water, residue, and smoke plume are not released into the surrounding atmosphere but fully collected and contained within the firefighting simulator. The more than 150,000 gallons of water expended during each training exercise is collected from the self-contained drain system, filtered, then re-used.
At the Navigation Seamanship Ship Handling simulator located within Afloat Training Group, Western Pacific's main building, each journalist was given a chance to take the helm and drive a guided-missile destroyer around Tokyo Bay. This provided a very realistic hands-on approach in understanding seamanship and navigation training U.S. forces personnel experience to sharpen their skills using the simulator.
At the end of the day, each journalist left with a deeper appreciation of fleet training available within the base at CFAY.
The tour of Afloat Training Group Western Pacific's training capabilities was part of Commander, Naval Forces Japan's Media Engagement Program. This is a quarterly information and education venue that provides the Japanese national and local news media with accurate and up-to-date information about the United States Navy in Japan. This program helps deepen the understanding about the U.S. Navy's purpose and the benefit of having Forward Deployed Naval Forces support the United States-Japan Alliance.
For more news from Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka, visit http://www.navy.mil/local/cfay/.