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Airmen and Soldiers conduct joint training

Airmen from McChord Field’s 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team are briefed on the features of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, by Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen and Soldiers met face-to-face before conducting day and nighttime helocast operations. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Russ Jackson)

Airmen from McChord Field’s 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team are briefed on the features of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, by Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen and Soldiers met face-to-face before conducting day and nighttime helocast operations. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen from the STS conducted 10 daytime helocast iterations and eight nighttime helocast iterations over a two-day span. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen from the STS conducted 10 daytime helocast iterations and eight nighttime helocast iterations over a two-day span. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Helocasting is an airborne technique used by special operations forces units for amphibious insertion into a military area of operation. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Helocasting is an airborne technique used by special operations forces units for amphibious insertion into a military area of operation. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team give Soldiers in an MH-47 Chinook helicopter the thumbs up July 14, 2014, to let them know they were fully accounted for in the water of American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen practiced soft duck operations which involve them pushing an inflated zodiac boat out of the back of the helicopter as they jump in after it. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team give Soldiers in an MH-47 Chinook helicopter the thumbs up July 14, 2014, to let them know they were fully accounted for in the water of American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The Airmen practiced soft duck operations which involve them pushing an inflated zodiac boat out of the back of the helicopter as they jump in after it. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team wait in American Lake July 14, 2014, for an MH-47 Chinook helicopter to extract them during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Soldiers from the 160th SOAR needed the AEI training and called upon members of the 22nd STS for assistance. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team wait in American Lake July 14, 2014, for an MH-47 Chinook helicopter to extract them during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Soldiers from the 160th SOAR needed the AEI training and called upon members of the 22nd STS for assistance. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team climbs a rope ladder July 14, 2014, into an MH-47 Chinook helicopter during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The daytime training allowed five Airmen to climb a rope ladder and three Airmen to be hoisted back into the MH-47. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team climbs a rope ladder July 14, 2014, into an MH-47 Chinook helicopter during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The daytime training allowed five Airmen to climb a rope ladder and three Airmen to be hoisted back into the MH-47. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The 160th SOAR was tasked with AIE training and called the 22nd STS in hopes their Airmen would have the training requirement to take part in the exercise. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jumps out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The 160th SOAR was tasked with AIE training and called the 22nd STS in hopes their Airmen would have the training requirement to take part in the exercise. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Staff Sergeant Dallas Stoll (center), 22nd Special Tactics Squadron combat controller instructs two Airmen from the 22nd STS Red Team on the proper technique for hoist extraction operations July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Stoll, a helocast master, was chosen to be the team leader for the exercise to ensure the members of Red Team could get the proper upgrade training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Staff Sergeant Dallas Stoll (center), 22nd Special Tactics Squadron combat controller instructs two Airmen from the 22nd STS Red Team on the proper technique for hoist extraction operations July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Stoll, a helocast master, was chosen to be the team leader for the exercise to ensure the members of Red Team could get the proper upgrade training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team is hoisted up to an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The 22nd STS Airmen took part in joint operations with the 160th SOAR assisting their Soldiers in upgrade helocast and hoist training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

An Airman from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team is hoisted up to an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The 22nd STS Airmen took part in joint operations with the 160th SOAR assisting their Soldiers in upgrade helocast and hoist training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jump out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. This exercise proved that Soldiers and Airmen from Joint Base Lewis-McChord can train together, fight together and run a base together. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)
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Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron’s Red Team jump out of an MH-47 Chinook helicopter July 14, 2014, during helocast alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at American Lake on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. This exercise proved that Soldiers and Airmen from Joint Base Lewis-McChord can train together, fight together and run a base together. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt.Russ Jackson)

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- Airmen and Soldiers from Joint Base Lewis-McChord participated in a water training exercise at American Lake here July 14 and 15, 2014.

Airmen from the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron's Red Team practiced helocasting alternate insertion and extraction training with Soldiers from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.

Helocasting is an airborne technique used by special operations forces units for amphibious insertion into a military area of operation. The unit is flown in by an aircraft, in this case an MH-47 Chinook helicopter, to an insertion point above the water where the STS members jumped out of the helo and into the water.

The 160th SOAR was tasked with AIE training and called the STS in hopes their Airmen would have the training requirement to take part in the exercise. Red Team had not practiced AIEs in some time and agreed to join in the two-day training.

During that span, the group conducted 10 daytime helocast iterations and eight nighttime helocast iterations. Their operations included soft duck insertions, which involved personnel pushing an inflated zodiac boat out of the back of the helicopter into the water and jumping in after it, ladder training and hoist training.

"As combat controllers, we can attach to Navy [special operations forces], Operational Detachment Alpha, or Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, so we have to be smart on every type of infil and exfil," said Staff Sgt. Dallas Stoll, 22nd STS combat controller. "This is why we practice fast roping, helocast master, and repelling which are all counted as AIEs."

As one of the most currently trained helocast masters available, Stoll was chosen to be the STS team leader for the exercise to ensure the members of Red Team could get the proper upgrade training.

To become a helocast master, an Airman must be an E-4 or above, signed off by the unit commander and have two daytime iterations and two nighttime iterations, one with non-combat equipment and one with combat equipment each.

"As a helocast master, it's my responsibility to ensure my Airmen don't jump from the aircraft unless we're 10 feet above the water and moving no faster than 10 knots of airspeed," Stoll said. "Once we're in that profile, I ensure my guys unhook, get out and get accounted for in the water as safely as possible."

Soldiers from the 160th SOAR needed to accomplish the upgrade training for helocasting special operations forces members out of their aircraft. They used this opportunity to train for extracting members from the water via a rope ladder and hoist methods as well.

The 22nd STS is a unit of the 24th Special Operations Wing based at Hurlburt Field, Florida. The primary mission of the 24th SOW is to provide special tactics forces for rapid global employment to enable airpower success.

The 24th SOW is U.S. Special Operations Command's tactical air and ground integration force and the Air Force's special operations ground force to enable global access, precision strike and personnel recovery operations
.
In addition to AIEs, STS members train in high altitude low opening and static line parachute jumps, demolition, controlling landing zones and helicopter landing zones.
Airmen from the STS can attach to numerous outside units across the Department of Defense and must be proficient in just about everything.

This exercise proved, once again, that Soldiers and Airmen from Joint Base Lewis-McChord can train together, fight together and run a base together.