photo courtesy of the 14th Civil Support Team, Connecticut National Guard
Have you ever had a time span at work where you found it difficult to catch your breath? Members of the 14th Civil Support Team (CST) can certainly say they have. In the first two weeks of October the CST completed over 80 percent of its annual AWT requirements and found themselves responding to two high-profile incidents. The first being a suspected biological hazard in Stamford and the second was the team’s participation in the Hartford Marathon. Each event brought its own
challenges that put the CST to the test.
The first event occurred on Oct. 3 when it was verified that a resident of Stamford, Conn. was involved in an incident at a White House Security checkpoint in Washington, DC. Once authorities verified the address of the suspect they quickly moved to collect evidence. Federal Law Enforcement Authorities, mainly the FBI, conducted a search of the premises locating a suspicious letter in close proximity to the residence. The 14th CST, a WMD response team, was contacted to conduct biological sampling alongside the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CT DEEP). The Connecticut and New York CSTs simultaneously ran the samples collected in their state of the art mobile laboratories and were able to provide on- scene analysis to Federal Law Enforcement Officials. The samples ran came back negative allowing other residents of the apartment complex to return to their homes.
Just ten days later the CST assisted state and local law enforcement with security for the Hartford Marathon. After the tragedy that occurred at the Boston Marathon, law enforcement officials have ramped up security efforts to keep the public safe and put National Guard resources to good use.
On Oct. 12, nine members of the 14th CST set up remote monitors and patrolled with members of the Hartford Police Department and the Hartford Bomb Squad. Members of the 14th CST were responsible for monitoring for chemical and radiological hazards while on patrols with bomb squad and K9 police units. The 14th CST was able to provide valuable assets in equipment, manpower and expertise as they contributed to the overall success of the event. In addition to working the marathon, the
14th CST also had three members of the 22-person unit complete the race.