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Seabees deployed with NMCB-5’s Detail Iwakuni build new CMU enclosures on board Marine Corps Air Station

By Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 5 | Nov. 7, 2019

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan (November 2, 2019) -- Seabees deployed with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5’s Detail Iwakuni started vertical construction on new concrete masonry unit (CMU) enclosures at Torii Housing on board Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS), Iwakuni, Japan Oct. 29. 

The skills Seabees use on the vertical construction of the CMUs in Iwakuni are the very same skills used to erect protective barriers during major combat operations (MCO), such as walls for entry control points, barriers protecting critical structures, Department of Defense assets, and more. However, these new CMU enclosures will provide a place that offers shelter and protection from hostile weather conditions, local wildlife and other elements for the residents’ refuse, while presenting a sanitary atmosphere for housing inhabitants. When complete, there will be 10 CMU refuge enclosures around the MCAS Iwakuni installation.  

“Years ago we didn’t have anything and trash was everywhere, even the street, and I thought that was very dangerous—so the work they’re doing is very good,” said Kimiya Hiraki, Torii Housing inspector with MCAS, Iwakuni. “The Seabees do a great job and make the residents really happy.”

The Seabees with NMCB-5 may not be the first unit to come to Iwakuni as a part of the rotational deployment for West Coast Naval Construction Force Seabee units, but the “Professionals” are certainly making an impact on the locals.

“When we saw the Seabees rolling up to our street we were so happy to see them,” said U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Jenevieve Sams, resident of Torii Housing from Glendale, California. “The other battalions did such a great job on the other streets. We are happy to have them here with us.”

The project consists of concrete pads with thickened edges and CMU block walls reinforced with vertical and horizontal reinforcing steel. The skills used in this project are the same as those used to construct base camps, maintenance facilities, and rehabilitate existing facilities.

NMCB-5 is deployed across the Indo-Pacific region conducting high-quality construction to support U.S. and partner nations to strengthen partnerships, deter aggression, and enable expeditionary logistics and naval power projection. The battalion stands ready to support Humanitarian Aid/Disaster Relief and MCO throughout the region.