TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. --
When it comes to training, experience proves to be the best teacher. Although security forces does a lot of training, some things can’t be learned unless you work through it firsthand.
The 325th Security Forces squadron has a very unique asset at their disposal. A virtual training environment called the Multiple Interactive Learning/Training Objectives Range, or MILO for short. Equipped with multiple sensors and five large screens, the MILO allows security forces members to conduct various scenario based training all within one room.
“MILO is our virtual range, we can do everything you can think of including target practice, hostage situations, and active shooters.” said Staff Sgt. Michael McDowell, 325th SFS standards and evaluation evaluator. “We use firearms with special conversion kits that use compressed air magazines, so you experience some nice recoil while you’re firing and it even forces you to have to reload when the magazines run out of air.”
The virtual range is in use by both new and experienced security forces members, so they can learn how to effectively use their training should they ever face real-world crises.
“We’ll bring in new Airmen and put them through a scenario that forces them to think and gets them out of their comfort zone,” said McDowell. “Shooting at a silhouette on a firing line is very different than facing an armed individual holding a hostage. There’s a right and a wrong way to react and we want them to try to save as many lives as possible.”
The MILO range is an invaluable tool that bolsters the readiness of every member of the squadron. The range ensures that the time a security forces member encounters an active shooter or suicidal armed individual is not the first time.
“We have the ability to create our own scenarios that can be base specific which is great for us to train for environments and facilities we can’t be armed in unless we’re responding to a call,” McDowell said. “With Tyndall becoming the base of the future, our security is going to be a top priority and we’re going to make sure we are ready to defend the base, its people, and its assets.”
As Tyndall continues to rebuild and recover from Hurricane Michael the 325th SFS is always improving their skills and training to achieve and maintain a high level of competency and professionalism, overcoming any challenges they face.