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Operation Pacific Reach

Transport exercise tests joint partners

Published: 02:42PM April 20th, 2017

POHANG, South Korea — On a bright and windy day, a gray U.S. Army landing craft utility ship loaded with tactical vehicles and other mission equipment to support exercise Operation Pacific Reach 2017 April 13 slowly made its way to the Trident Pier causeway at Pohang, South Korea, while U.S. Soldiers and Marines patiently wait.

When the ship reached its mooring, service members grabbed lines to secure and position it, and then began unloading and transporting the equipment to the marshaling yard, a holding area where the equipment would be shipped to front-line forces.

South Korean and U.S. service members from the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps came together to test combined joint logistics over-the-shore capabilities, as well as their ability to use rail, inland waterways and air terminal supply point capabilities during combined joint and multidomain training focused on readiness.

The Army Soldiers include those from the 1st Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division from Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The exercise could not be accomplished without the effort of Soldiers and Marines operating the Inland Petroleum Distribution System. The Army, working alongside the Marines Corps, maintained the system’s capability to transport fuel and water from the sea to major logistical transportation hubs.

During the two-week exercise, units worked together in sustained winds and waves to construct the modular sections of the Trident Pier causeway while preparing to offload the heavy equipment on Dogu Beach.

Transporting equipment on- and off-shore was only one piece of the exercise. South Korean aircraft also transported equipment to locations where it was needed.

“Operation Pacific Reach has offered us a unique opportunity to inherent our interoperability between our (South Korean) and joint partners,” said Army Col. Christopher Dexter, commander of Material Support Command Korea. “Every day, we work together, side-by-side, and have the opportunity to collaborate, cooperate and communicate with our (South Korean) counterparts.”

The exercise focused on logistical operations from the air, sea and shore to transport mission equipment across the Korean Peninsula using utility and mechanized landing craft, logistics support vessels and causeway ferries. The crafts transported and offloaded nearly 2,000 cargo containers during the operation.