Unshouldering a heavy pack and stretching onto a military cot can be a small but welcome comfort for warfighters after traveling by air for hours.
Hundreds of soldiers had that modest amenity available to them as they arrived for the Arctic Anvil exercise in Alaska this summer, thanks to Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support.
The Construction and Equipment supply chain manages military cots and delivered 400 of them ahead of schedule for the U.S. Army Pacific exercise.
“During the final Arctic Anvil planning conference in May, we determined the need for a Life Support Area to support forces arriving and departing Fort Wainwright (starting) in July,” said Todd Dudinsky, plans and operations division chief with U.S. Army Alaska.
Dudinsky said that Bob Sherrill, DLA Pacific warfighter support representative and Alaska Command liaison officer, was helpful in facilitating the order.
“He verified the cots were on hand in California prior to ordering and notified the item manager of our requirement,” Dudinsky said.
Fort Wainwright is serving as an exercise staging base and will receive soldiers as they arrive for, and depart from, the exercise.
Military cots are considered a humanitarian relief item and a certain quantity must be available at the depots to support disaster relief operations as well as warfighter demands, said Cynthia Ciardullo, a material planner with C&E.
“The safety level is about 6,300 cots but I try to maintain about 10,000 each in stock at all times,” Ciardullo said. “I continually monitor to ensure that there are enough cots in various locations.”
Ciardullo said it’s important to maintain a proper stock level of cots in various locations to swiftly and effectively respond to worldwide missions.
Jeannette Oleykowski, a C&E material planner, said that the cots are on a long term contract that allows them to monitor what’s on hand at all times.
Oleykowski said that the material planners work closely with customer account specialists, which allows them to communicate with customers to forecast their needs and begin to move materiel or order additional stock. At other times, material planners may move stock from one depot to another to prepare for a potential surge in demand, such as in the case of an approaching hurricane.
“It’s a seamless effort working with our customer account specialists,” Oleykowski said. “It’s a very good team that we have.”
C&E also ordered fence posts and barbed wire for the exercise.
Arctic Anvil involves around 8,000 service members from U.S. Army Alaska, Alaska National Guard, Iowa National Guard, Air Force, and the Canadian military, and takes place from July 23 to Aug. 3.