“USS Buttercup” Damage Control Training Facility Field Trip

On October 16th, a portion of the unit took a field trip to the “USS Buttercup”, a facility in Norfolk, VA used to train Navy Damage Control personnel by simulating a flooding compartment on a ship. After attending a brief presentation on basic repair training for pipes and holes, the unit was split into two groups, each participating in a different section of the trainer. One section consisted of a room filled with pipes and a model bulkhead littered with holes that Cadets were required to patch using various materials provided while being sprayed with water. The other section was a compartment that was modeled after an actual Navy ship which flooded with water from various holes as smoke filled the room and alarms blared to add to the confusion. Cadets were required to patch the holes in the bulkheads using wooden blocks of various shapes and sizes. Though the participants failed in this task, the experience was unforgettable.  Afterwards, the unit traveled to the base of an amphibious landing craft unit, where cadets were able to get a hands-on tour of an LCAC Amphibious Assault hovercraft. After lack of interest prevented the unit from attending this trip last year, this year’s experience will likely seal the trip into the annual traditions of the unit.

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