Private Adam Tooth is currently deployed in Afghanistan, working as a Driver with 13 Close Support Logistic Squadron. In his first blog he looks back at the start of his tour and explains what he’s doing.
I joined the Regiment in April this year after completing my basic Bowman Radio signaller’s course at DST Leconsfield. I was posted into 24 Squadron as a radio operator waiting to hear the news of the upcoming tour of Afghanistan.
After a last-minute piece of training I deployed to Afghanistan on Operation HERRICK 13 with 15 Close Support Squadron as a driver. At first I was a little bit confused as to why I was being deployed as a driver, however a little later I realised – Driver was my secondary trade and was a prime opportunity for me to gain some great experience operating the wide range of vehicles we use in theatre. The EPLS (Enhanced Pallet Loading System) which is currently our main vehicle in theatre, as well as other important vehicles such as the MASTIFF, RIDGEBACK and CST (Close Support Tanker).
Each vehicle has a small crew which consists of a driver, a commander and a gunner. Not being trained in these specialist vehicles like the MASTIFF, I sometimes find myself as a gunner responsible for top cover manning a GPMG (General Purpose Machine Gun) whilst on CLPs (Combat Logistic Patrols). CLPs can last from 24 hours to 15 days, sometimes doing multiple loops to and from the main operating area. I have currently been on several CLPs driving as top cover, taking turns to switch role whilst doing short halts. I hope to be placed on some specialist vehicle courses and hopefully finish my tour working in Radio Troop. I then look forward to returning home and enjoy spending some time with my family and friends, go on a relaxing holiday with my girlfriend and most of all having a nice cold beer!