Scott Air Force Base News

USTRANSCOM hosts non-lethal weapons training

Staff Sgt. Brandon Orr, 375th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle operator, is tasered during the Non-Lethal Weapons Familiarization event at the Illinois National Guard Training Area in Sparta, Illinois. Orr was one of seven participates who volunteered to get tasered so that others could see the effects on the body. Photo by Senior Airman Melissa Estevez
Staff Sgt. Brandon Orr, 375th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle operator, is tasered during the Non-Lethal Weapons Familiarization event at the Illinois National Guard Training Area in Sparta, Illinois. Orr was one of seven participates who volunteered to get tasered so that others could see the effects on the body. Photo by Senior Airman Melissa Estevez

U.S. Transportation Command recently hosted their fifth Non-lethal Weapons Familiarization event the Illinois National Guard Training Area in Sparta, Illinois.

Representatives from the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate, Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, conducted familiarizations for 45 shooters from the local police department, local Sheriff's department, 126th Air Refueling Wing, 375th Security Forces Squadron, and the 375th Logistics Readiness Squadron.

The objective of the non-lethal weapons FAMFIRE event was to educate leadership, planners and forces regarding non-lethal weapons capabilities.

Sloan Cox, USTRANSCOM joint non-lethal weapons program manager and Combatant Command non-lethal weapons liaison

“The objective of the non-lethal weapons FAMFIRE event was to educate leadership, planners and forces regarding non-lethal weapons capabilities,” said Sloan Cox, USTRANSCOM joint non-lethal weapons program manager and Combatant Command non-lethal weapons liaison.

Representatives from companies, such as Safariland and PepperBall, demonstrated weapons and ammunitions. Once demonstrated, individuals tried out a variety of weaponry.

Participants fired from 12-gauge M870 shotguns, M203 40mm grenade launchers and FN303R compressed air launchers.

Participants fired from 12-gauge M870 shotguns, M203 40mm grenade launchers and FN303R compressed air launchers.

These weapons are usually considered lethal, but when the ammunition is interchanged with rubber bullets, bean bags, etc., they are used for crowd control or adherence.

They also viewed a sting-ball grenade flash bang, TASER and a modular crowd control munitions demonstration.

“I went in knowing next to nothing about non-lethal practices and learned a lot in just a couple of hours,” said Senior Airman Luis-Jose Hernandez, 375th LRS special vehicle maintainer. “I enjoy shooting the weapons. They’re so good at what they’re designed to do.”

Non-lethal weapons provide warfighters with escalation-of-force options when lethal force is not the best first response. Non-lethal weapons are intended to have reversible effects on personnel and materiel.

“These types of munitions are an asset that could gain an aggressor’s compliance,” said Cox. “All personnel who would be in a position to use one of these weapons systems have been trained and certified by a certified trainer.”

I went in knowing next to nothing about non-lethal practices and learned a lot in just a couple of hours. I enjoy shooting the weapons. They’re so good at what they’re designed to do.

Senior Airman Luis-Jose Hernandez, 375th LRS special vehicle maintainer

The Department of Defense defines non-lethal weapons as “weapons, devices and munitions that are explicitly designed and primarily employed to incapacitate targeted personnel or materiel immediately, while minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel and undesired damage to property in the target area or environment.”

“The event was a huge success, anytime you can get local police agencies mixed with local Air Force security forces together to focus on a common goal it is a win,” said Cox.

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