Patrolling the perimeter

  • Published
  • By Airman Tristan D. Viglianco
  • 9th Reconnaissance Wing Public Affairs

The 9th Security Forces Squadron is tasked with securing the base’s perimeter and while this is a routine tasking for a security forces personnel, Beale’s perimeter presents unique challenges the 9th SFS must overcome. Beale’s vast 26-mile perimeter, rocky terrain, and wooded area riddled with various obstacles makes base security challenging. However, Team Beale conducts coyote patrols to meet these challenges.

Highly-trained security personnel perform coyote patrols, off-road patrols along the perimeter of the base, in a variety of all-terrain vehicles.

“It is good to get out on the ATVs and get eyes on the perimeter,” said Tech. Sgt. Jeremy Delvaux, 9th SFS flight chief. “We have a lot of perimeter, which isn’t visible from anywhere else on base because it is so large and hidden.”

The base perimeter patrols are a coordinated effort made by the 9th SFS and the rest of Team Beale.

“The 26-mile perimeter of the base is broken up into six sectors,” said Senior Airman David Gill, 9th SFS base defense operation center controller. “We do at least one run per shift with multiple shifts per day. The route determined randomly by our anti-terrorism officer.”

Coyote patrols are unique compared to many of the security measures used across the Air Force.

“This is the only time I have gotten to experience something like this in my Air Force career,” said Delvaux. “I enjoy going out on the runs, it is one of my favorite ways we keep the base safe.”

Even though it is enjoyable for many, the security forces Airmen must be trained in how to effectively and safely operate the vehicles.

“We practice operating the vehicles on different terrain,” said Gill. “We also are put through an obstacle course with the ATVs to show we are competent and safe.”

The patrols help with law enforcement and maintaining structural integrity of the perimeter as well.

“We look for suspicious individuals, trespassers, and any issues with the fence,” said Delvaux. “When we find structural issues we let civil engineering know.”

Base security is an important part of security forces job and the coyote patrols are one tool the 9th SFS uses.

“The patrols are used to ensure the safety and security of the installation and the Air Force’s number one asset, our people,” said Gill.