FORT HOOD — Under clear skies and a cool breeze, 36th Engineer Brigade soldiers conducted a wet gap crossing training exercise Thursday morning at Nolan Creek, near the post.

The weeklong training event was part of a longer monthlong gunnery conducted by the 1st Cavalry Division.

“Many of the loud booms being heard off-post are from this exercise,” said Staff Sgt. Keith Anderson, 1st Cavalry Division public affairs noncommissioned officer in charge.

During the day’s event, 14 Bradley Fighting Vehicles and an M88 Hercules recovery vehicle crossed over the 80-meter gap of the creek, said Maj. Andrew Spring, executive officer of the 2nd Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.

The improved ribbon bridge, when unassembled, can be hauled by a truck or helicopter. Once in the water, the sections of the bridge begin to unfold.

Erection boats

Then, using M2 bridge erection boats, the bridge crew assembles the bridge, said Lt. Col. Stephen Kolouch, commander of the 62th Engineer Battalion.

The boats help to steady and anchor the bridge, especially during the fast currents of a river.

Training exercises like this one help integrate friendly forces, “and provide freedom of maneuver (for the tanks and Bradleys) to get commanders where they need to go,” Kolouch said.

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