West Virginian and Peruvian Light Wheeled Mechanics Train in Lima
By U.S. Army Sergeant Zoe Morris / West Virginia National Guard February 24, 2020
West Virginia Army National Guard (WVARNG) soldiers conducted a second round of light-wheeled vehicle mechanic training with the Peruvian Armed Forces, January 8-17, 2020, in Lima, as a part of the U.S. Department of State’s Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) and the National Guard Bureau’s State Partnership Program (SPP).
This is the second time several of the WVARNG soldiers have participated in a GPOI. They first linked up with the Peruvian military in November 2018 prior to a Peruvian Army contingent deploying in support of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic.
The two militaries joined forces to train on a High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) maintenance both times.
WVARNG was invited back to Peru to assist in additional training for the engineer company that deployed in January. This additional training is a result of the second rotational force that sent a formal request to GPOI for additional training on the M1165 HMMWV due to maintenance issues that arose in Central Africa with their current deployed vehicles.
With a goal of strengthening Peruvian Armed Forces mechanic’s and operator’s capability to self-maintain vehicles while deployed, the primary focus of this training session was Preventative Maintenance Checks and Services (PMCS) through classroom and hands-on application.
WVARNG mechanics were able to train their Peruvian counterparts on PMCS processes with the HMMWV vehicle and on the use of technical manuals (provided in Spanish) to identify preventative and corrective actions. Moreover, WVARNG mechanics were able to share their best practices and lessons learned regarding HMMWV maintenance in order to prepare them for their deployment in the following months.
“We continue to work together because of our strong relationship that has been built throughout our partnership with Peru over the last 20 years,” said U.S. Army Sergeant First Class Hector Guillén, SPP coordinator-Peru. “Our noncommissioned officers [NCOs] care about instructing and training soldiers, no matter where in the world and will continue to provide exceptional training at the request of our partner nation when needed. We appreciate the opportunity for our soldiers to travel and work hand-in-hand with outstanding Peruvian soldiers, airmen and sailors.”
West Virginia and Peru have been SPP partners since 1996 and have engaged in nearly 150 interactions that provide insight into regional challenges facing the Andean ridge, especially in the areas of counter-insurgency, anti-terrorism, emergency preparedness, risk mitigation, disaster response, and recovery.
The two partner nations continue to participate in subject matter expert exchanges to enhance force interoperability, develop and strengthen the Peruvian military’s NCOs and increase capabilities for the two militaries.