3 Gds ready to strike even amid COVID-19

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19 Oct 2020 | OPS & TRAINING

3 Gds ready to strike even amid COVID-19

Despite the disruptions caused by COVID-19, soldiers from 3rd Battalion, Singapore Guards (3 Gds) proved their high combat readiness in their ATEC evaluation.

// Video & Story Koh Eng Beng

// Photos Chai Sian Liang & Kenneth Lin

After almost two years of tough training, these Guardsmen completed a significant milestone earlier this week during their Army Training Evaluation Centre (ATEC) Stage 2 evaluation.

Their Readiness Condition (REDCON) grade was 2A – the second-highest possible grade.

Enhanced safety measures

Held from 6 to 12 Oct, this was the first ATEC evaluation conducted by the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) since the start of the Circuit Breaker period in April.

A slew of measures were put in place to allow the battalion to train for and take part in their ATEC evaluation safely.

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For example, umpires and soldiers from external units that were supporting the ATEC evaluation had to pass a COVID-19 saliva test (pictured above).

Soldiers rehearsing their urban operation drills before moving out for their ATEC battle.

The 3 Gds soldiers had to train and operate in their functional groups. Those who had to move across functional groups were required to pass a COVID-19 saliva test.

The soldiers also practised social distancing within their group, and wore masks at all times except during training. Other measures included twice-daily temperature taking and enhanced hygiene practices.

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Battle plans were discussed over video conferencing (pictured above) to minimise physical contact among servicemen.

High combat readiness

During the seven-day, six-night battle, the guardsmen excelled in their fight against the Opposing Force (OPFOR).

They also carried out heliborne and underslung operations with the Republic of Singapore Air Force.

 

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Troops as well as equipment and assets like the MB290 vehicles and mortar were deployed speedily into the battlefield training area by two Chinooks (pictured above) and a Super Puma helicopter.

The battalion comprises more than 500 Regulars and Full-time National Servicemen. Their success in ATEC is testament to the Singapore Army's ability to conduct complex, battalion-level operations safely and effectively, even during a pandemic.

Said 3 Gds Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Bernard Tay: "The good result gives confidence that the unit is operationally ready to defend Singapore and to protect our national interests."

 

Soldiers boarding a Super Puma helicopter during the ATEC battle.

Curious how these Guardsmen fared during their ATEC battle? Catch the action here:

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