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The Newsroom => Military Current Affairs & News => Topic started by: Jarnhamar on January 28, 2019, 05:53:05

Title: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Jarnhamar on January 28, 2019, 05:53:05
About 20 Canadian Armed Forces members suffered frostbite, and some required hospitalization, following a military training session near Petawawa, Ont., held earlier this month in extremely cold weather. 

On Jan. 17-18, nearly 120 soldiers with the Royal Canadian Dragoons participated in basic winter survival training while the temperature dropped to –31 C. 


https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canadian-soldiers-suffer-frostbite-during-winter-training-1.4994767


1/6th of the company getting frostbite, that's gotta sting.
 8)
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: SeaKingTacco on January 28, 2019, 10:35:57
I wonder what happened here. I recall taking part in numerous winterexs as late as the mid-1990s in conditions that cold and do not recall ever seeing even one cold injury.

Is the kit lacking or have we lost the institutional knowledge on how to operate safely in extreme winter conditions?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Colin P on January 28, 2019, 11:27:55
Likely a bit of both
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: mariomike on January 28, 2019, 11:40:06
Is the kit lacking or have we lost the institutional knowledge on how to operate safely in extreme winter conditions?

For reference to the discussion,

Frostbite - how to avoid?
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=127524.0

OP:
Frostbite - how to avoid it in any weather and circumstance?

Can someone please sum up all the things one have to know and need to take care of in order to never get frostbite?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Remius on January 28, 2019, 11:53:10
I wonder what happened here. I recall taking part in numerous winterexs as late as the mid-1990s in conditions that cold and do not recall ever seeing even one cold injury.

Is the kit lacking or have we lost the institutional knowledge on how to operate safely in extreme winter conditions?

Could be bad leadership, poor supervision, inexperience...

How green were these guys?  How many cold weather exercises in arctic tents have these particular armoured guys done that were that cold?

did they have the right kit?  Some troops seem to think combat boots and NEOs are ok for this type of thing.  is there still a mukluk shortage? 

Not all of the details were provided in the article.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Rifleman62 on January 28, 2019, 11:59:57
I believe the wind chill table is still current.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: medicineman on January 28, 2019, 12:23:58
:pop:

I wonder how this SIR went over on the CDS' desk...

MM
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: RelentlessTsunami on January 28, 2019, 12:58:05
I wonder what happened here. I recall taking part in numerous winterexs as late as the mid-1990s in conditions that cold and do not recall ever seeing even one cold injury.

Is the kit lacking or have we lost the institutional knowledge on how to operate safely in extreme winter conditions?

Since it was a bug out situation and not planned ex there's lots of opportunities for guys to not have their proper kit on hand, not be properly hydrated (maybe hungover from the night before), sleep deprived, etc...

I think it's a leadership failure because they should have been checking over these guys before they set off to ensure they were in good enough condition and properly equipped to accomplish the task. Then appropriately discipline those who weren't... not make them ruck out anyway.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Baden Guy on January 28, 2019, 13:15:23
I thought "Maj. Kevin Wong" did a good job addressing the incident while saying nothing that would answer the obvious questions ref equipment and training. See video at link.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canadian-soldiers-suffer-frostbite-during-winter-training-1.4994767
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: ExRCDcpl on January 28, 2019, 13:20:07
I’ve been on winter warfare exes with the regiment (not THAT long ago) that were colder.  That one year in Ramore when it was like -52 with the windchill comes to mind, and we didn’t have any cold related casualties that I can recall in any winter ex ever.

What I can see being the issue here, is if bug out kit lists are on the same principle they were when I was still in the regiment, we were to have no more or no less kit than what was on the list come inspection time.  As such, I followed the kit list to a T regardless of whether or not I agreed with what was on it from a practical standpoint.

We were never bugged out and sent to the field with that kit list, so it never really became an issue, but if that’s the case here then to me it’s a failure at all supervisory levels to 1) not ensure the kit list was practical and effective and 2) not allow individuals to pack additional kit if they so choose.

Not saying that is what happened here, but my time in the regiment most higher ups weren’t exactly open to change and suggestions, and I can’t see that culture changing dramatically in the last 7 years.

Whether it be the MCpls, Snr NCO’s, the officers, or all of them, the troops were failed at some level of leadership.........I’m curious as to who it was.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 28, 2019, 13:21:53
Since it was a bug out situation and not planned ex there's lots of opportunities for guys to not have their proper kit on hand, not be properly hydrated (maybe hungover from the night before), sleep deprived, etc...

I think it's a leadership failure because they should have been checking over these guys before they set off to ensure they were in good enough condition and properly equipped to accomplish the task. Then appropriately discipline those who weren't... not make them ruck out anyway.

The first rule of training troops in extreme cold weather: have  a great big hanger/ school gym etc handy, just in case....
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Jarnhamar on January 28, 2019, 13:28:34
Since it was a bug out situation and not planned ex there's lots of opportunities for guys to not have their proper kit on hand, not be properly hydrated (maybe hungover from the night before), sleep deprived, etc...

I think it's a leadership failure because they should have been checking over these guys before they set off to ensure they were in good enough condition and properly equipped to accomplish the task. Then appropriately discipline those who weren't... not make them ruck out anyway.

On the other frosty hand corporals are NCOs, but, we treat them like menials. Mopping concrete floors, garbage sweeps, crap jobs. It seems like we're taking more and more authority and responsibility away from our NCO core.

What are the chances the mcpls or sergeants had time (read permission) to take their crews out and do their own training?

Guessing they got a check in the box basic winter warfare course. Other opportunities to train were taken up with IBTS and  the latest online course that 'OMG needs to be done'.

12km March and an over nighter? Lack of march discipline and dumb night time tasks.

Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Jarnhamar on January 28, 2019, 13:32:01
I thought "Maj. Kevin Wong" did a good job addressing the incident while saying nothing that would answer the obvious questions ref equipment and training. See video at link.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canadian-soldiers-suffer-frostbite-during-winter-training-1.4994767

Was thinking the same thing. He's good.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 28, 2019, 13:32:24
About 20 Canadian Armed Forces members suffered frostbite, and some required hospitalization, following a military training session near Petawawa, Ont., held earlier this month in extremely cold weather.

On Jan. 17-18, nearly 120 soldiers with the Royal Canadian Dragoons participated in basic winter survival training while the temperature dropped to –31 C.


https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canadian-soldiers-suffer-frostbite-during-winter-training-1.4994767


1/6th of the company getting frostbite, that's gotta sting.
 8)

That’s a platoon rendered in effective.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: SeaKingTacco on January 28, 2019, 13:33:32
The first rule of training troops in extreme cold weather: have  a great big hanger/ school gym etc handy, just in case....

Not that I am necessarily disagreeing with you, but if you have arctic tents and the world's supply of naptha, you can be comfortable in pretty much any winter conditions. I have taken it as low as -40C in an arctic tent. Inside, with the stove and lantern going, it was tee-shirt weather. If the wind chill value gets out of hand, you just confine everyone to their tents unless they are peeing or re-fueling the stove or lantern. Problem solved.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 28, 2019, 13:58:37
That’s a platoon rendered in effective.

And the 'rule of the frostbitten thumb' says that if 20 troops go down with cold injuries, there were about another 20 who were getting close....
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Blackadder1916 on January 28, 2019, 15:13:16
That’s a platoon rendered in effective.

And the 'rule of the frostbitten thumb' says that if 20 troops go down with cold injuries, there were about another 20 who were getting close....

And 20 who are needed to take care of those suffering.  Not a platoon rendered ineffective but the majority of a company.  Having some experience with cold (and heat) injuries, leadership is the prime factor that determines good or bad outcomes.

Oh, and low, low sub-zero temps are not that much of a contributing factor.  The worst cold injuries I've seen happened in temps just a little below freezing.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: PuckChaser on January 28, 2019, 15:17:12
No article on the number of career ending injuries caused by the CAF sticking with a Korean War era parachute? I watched 33% of a Coy become casualties on exercise once, including broken femurs, necks and backs due to the decent rate of the CT1.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Colin P on January 28, 2019, 16:41:03
I’ve been on winter warfare exes with the regiment (not THAT long ago) that were colder.  That one year in Ramore when it was like -52 with the windchill comes to mind, and we didn’t have any cold related casualties that I can recall in any winter ex ever.

What I can see being the issue here, is if bug out kit lists are on the same principle they were when I was still in the regiment, we were to have no more or no less kit than what was on the list come inspection time.  As such, I followed the kit list to a T regardless of whether or not I agreed with what was on it from a practical standpoint.

We were never bugged out and sent to the field with that kit list, so it never really became an issue, but if that’s the case here then to me it’s a failure at all supervisory levels to 1) not ensure the kit list was practical and effective and 2) not allow individuals to pack additional kit if they so choose.

Not saying that is what happened here, but my time in the regiment most higher ups weren’t exactly open to change and suggestions, and I can’t see that culture changing dramatically in the last 7 years.

Whether it be the MCpls, Snr NCO’s, the officers, or all of them, the troops were failed at some level of leadership.........I’m curious as to who it was.

One wonders if they just did the bug out and hoped for the best, or they did individual, troop and Company training, perhaps an overnight on the lawn to work out the bugs in the training?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Eye In The Sky on January 28, 2019, 17:16:13
About 20 Canadian Armed Forces members suffered frostbite, and some required hospitalization, following a military training session near Petawawa, Ont., held earlier this month in extremely cold weather.

On Jan. 17-18, nearly 120 soldiers with the Royal Canadian Dragoons participated in basic winter survival training while the temperature dropped to –31 C.


https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canadian-soldiers-suffer-frostbite-during-winter-training-1.4994767


1/6th of the company squadron getting frostbite, that's gotta sting.
 8)

 ;D
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Eye In The Sky on January 28, 2019, 17:22:10
Also not included (unless I missed it) were how many were Pte's, NCOs, Warrant Officers and/or Officers.

I've been on winter ex's where it was intended as Winter Indoc and someone higher up got all full of piss and vinegar and wanted it to be "winter warfare".  The SSM had to talk some sense into the grown-ups and explain the difference and get people to have a drink of reality-flavoured KoolAid.

But agree, something (or things, more than likely) feel thru the cracks here.  -31 isn't that cold with the kit we had decades ago and the stuff issued now is better (if you know how to use it...which you usually learned during winter indoc...).
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 28, 2019, 19:24:42
Also not included (unless I missed it) were how many were Pte's, NCOs, Warrant Officers and/or Officers.

I've been on winter ex's where it was intended as Winter Indoc and someone higher up got all full of piss and vinegar and wanted it to be "winter warfare".  The SSM had to talk some sense into the grown-ups and explain the difference and get people to have a drink of reality-flavoured KoolAid.

But agree, something (or things, more than likely) feel thru the cracks here.  -31 isn't that cold with the kit we had decades ago and the stuff issued now is better (if you know how to use it...which you usually learned during winter indoc...).

Point to note: If you run (especially inexperienced and non-acclimatized) troops too fast at 30 below, you can damage their lungs quite easily as well... Not saying that happened in this case, but it's yet another consideration not many think of.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Walt on January 28, 2019, 19:57:14
There is no reason, given the cold weather gear that the CF provides, that under a controlled winter indoctrination exercise, soldiers would experience frostbite. Proper education should have prevented this unnecessary occurrence:

1. Wear loose layered clothing, and the kit provided,
2. Remove layers as required to allow evaporation of body perspiration,
3. Ensure that extremities are covered and dry,
4. Stay hydrated, and fuel up on snacks between meals,
5. Take breaks to change damp socks and boot liners as required,
6. USE THE BUDDY SYSTEM. Check your mates for the early onset of frostbite before it becomes serious (symptoms include blotchy waxy skin, mental clumsiness, uncontrolled shivering).

The coldest Winter Indoc I experienced was in -40 degrees in Spruce Wood Provincial Park on the outskirts of CFB Shilo. Six days and a lot of discomfort; however, not one casualty!
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Old Sweat on January 28, 2019, 20:29:57
I had been holding off, but the above reference to Shilo triggered a reaction. In December 1960 my OCP Phase One course culminated with an exercise in the norththeast end of the Shilo ranges. We had undergone an indoctrination in camp before deploying, and our instructors were experienced, tough and firm in their approach. We set up camp, moved, set up, etc, etc for about five days. We also constructed expedient shelters, aka lean tos and snow caves, in weather that bottomed out at -55f.

Many, the majority of us, had put on a uniform for the first time in September, so the experience level was low. Despite that, and the weather, we suffered no casualties and had no problem marching back to camp hauling our toboggans and tent group kit. I have a picture someone took of Officer Cadet Norm Rouleau (father of Mike) and me taking a break besides our toboggan and, while we obviously were tired, we were fit and able to continue. I credit this to our course staff who knew their business.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Chris Pook on January 28, 2019, 20:40:16
Just a thought

How many Canadian kids still walk to school at -31C?

For most of us in my era, the early 80s, Winter Ex's were a continuation of life as usual in the sense that many of us had been walking a mile plus or more, two to four times a day (if you were lucky enough to walk home for lunch) and play outside before school, at two recesses, during lunch and after school.  Not to mention time on toboggan hills and outdoor rinks.  With 2 meter snow banks, 30 below, wind chill and snow glare

Most of us had figured out that some of the stuff mum had been telling us about dressing made some kind of sense.

Bit different if you get dragged away from your playstation, turfed out of your basement and chucked into a snow drift.

I'm reminded of the Ghanaian kids on Phase 2 at Gagetown in January - every stitch of clothing on, coddled in the cabs of the Deuces, and still suffering from hypothermia.

No frames of reference.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: meni0n on January 28, 2019, 20:44:53
From reading some of the comments on reddit, it would seem that they were all prepped for a bug out in their vehicles given they're an armoured regiment and this was an IRU bug out. The bde cmd gave them a last minute order to leave the vehicles and do the 12 km march. Probably in the haste of getting all the kit out of the vehicles and prepping the tobogans a few things were overlooked, forgotten etc, and this is how you end up with so many casualties.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: mariomike on January 28, 2019, 22:10:34
I'm reminded of the Ghanaian kids on Phase 2 at Gagetown in January - every stitch of clothing on, coddled in the cabs of the Deuces, and still suffering from hypothermia.

No frames of reference.

There was some discussion of a possible link between ethnicity and cold weather injuries,

African-born soldier sues army for cold weather injuries

Abdoulie Bojang says his ethnicity made him more vulnerable to being affected by the extreme weather
http://www.voice-online.co.uk/article/african-born-soldier-sues-army-cold-weather-injuries (http://bit.ly/1qCIMKz)
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Eye In The Sky on January 28, 2019, 22:22:53
From reading some of the comments on reddit, it would seem that they were all prepped for a bug out in their vehicles given they're an armoured regiment and this was an IRU bug out. The bde cmd gave them a last minute order to leave the vehicles and do the 12 km march. Probably in the haste of getting all the kit out of the vehicles and prepping the tobogans a few things were overlooked, forgotten etc, and this is how you end up with so many casualties.

I'd be dressed pretty differently for a mounted gig compared to dismounted one.  Sweat = uh oh.  Hell, if the Bravo 2-0 story is true, one of them tabbed with their heavy layers on and suffered for it.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: SeaKingTacco on January 28, 2019, 22:50:29
I'd be dressed pretty differently for a mounted gig compared to dismounted one.  Sweat = uh oh.  Hell, if the Bravo 2-0 story is true, one of them tabbed with their heavy layers on and suffered for it.

I recall being in the tobogan traces at -30c, stripped from the waist up down to my long underwear top/wool shirt, trigger mitts and balaclava and being quite comfortable. As soon as we stopped, my parka would come on for the halt. It is all about being quick on adding/removing layering.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Target Up on January 29, 2019, 00:31:24
Those of you who may know mikeninercharlie, he can attest to a certain Ex Rapier Thrust in '81 or '82 when guys were dropping like flies from all the units in the brigade due to cold injuries.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 29, 2019, 00:50:32
Those of you who may know mikeninercharlie, he can attest to a certain Ex Rapier Thrust in '81 or '82 when guys were dropping like flies from all the units in the brigade due to cold injuries.
I remember Raping and Thrusting 82. It was about minus one billion. Not fun.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: ballz on January 29, 2019, 01:12:11
I guess now would be a real inopportune time for the CA to have to answer questions about its mukluks, fleece, and cold weather glove shortages... :dunno:
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 29, 2019, 01:16:59
I guess now would be a real inopportune time for the CA to have to answer questions about its mukluks, fleece, and cold weather glove shortages... :dunno:
A few years ago, 2012 I think, the Div Comd visited Minto Armories. He and his entourage were quite taken aback when I informed him that our 10 man tents were in poor repair and it seems new ones were not forthcoming. Our Bde G4 was rattling the bushes to find us new ones already.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: AbdullahD on January 29, 2019, 01:34:38
A few years ago, 2012 I think, the Div Comd visited Minto Armories. He and his entourage were quite taken aback when I informed him that our 10 man tents were in poor repair and it seems new ones were not forthcoming. Our Bde G4 was rattling the bushes to find us new ones already.

(Rant)Ok, I am kind of getting ticked at this thread and episode. First I was kind of laughing, "Haha these idiots can't survive in the cold", then I was puzzled.. "how did this actually happen"... Now I am genuinely curious, if the story of an vehicle bug out turn hiking bug out drill. With lack of proper training, gear etc turned bad is true...

Tents, how in the world is it that we are failing in tents. I get it we are under funded, we are under manned etc, we as a nation need to address this... but why or how are we planning training exercises with inadequate equipment and/or training.

Or am I missing something?(/end rant)
Sorry I just needed to vent that out, it is an embarrassment.

Abdullah
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: JesseWZ on January 29, 2019, 01:52:06
I think we fail in far more then just tents... for an army that operates North of 49, we have procurement issues with a host of cold weather related items...
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: CTD on January 29, 2019, 03:34:27
I am not sure how a situation like this happened. Simply put, the Canadian Forces have some really good cold weather gear. People will complain about any kit no matter what.
You should be able to survive with basic issue of kit as long as you use it properly.
To me reading articles that Soldiers do not know how to use or make range cards, then read an article that they are suffering frost bite tells me one basic thing. A total of LEADERSHIP. (or nowadays is it management/ supervisory skills) either way the leaders failed.
It seems like the Leaders need to get back to the basics, and they need to learn from the top down. If their troops were not prepared for march, then their leaers hsould have spoke up and ensured there Troops were properly turned out before setting foot.

Using the excuse they were mounted, then at the last minute dismounted does not hold hold any water. If your in mounted Ops in the winter then you should be prepared incase your ride breaks down and you have to hoof it out.
I shake my head.

Sometimes crap happens, but this seems more like a wet one ran down the leg and they ignored it.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: ModlrMike on January 29, 2019, 10:06:02
Perhaps we can be a little less eager to hang the leaders; after all, we wern't there. You can take all the necessary precautions, but you still can't prevent people from doing stupid stuff. If you could, I'd be out of work.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Bruce Monkhouse on January 29, 2019, 10:12:01
Perhaps we can be a little less eager to hang the leaders; after all, we wern't there. You can take all the necessary precautions, but you still can't prevent people from doing stupid stuff. If you could, I'd be out of work.

Off on their own yes, but thats why we have leaders, to prevent people from doing stupid stuff, otherwise why even have leaders?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Journeyman on January 29, 2019, 10:29:04
Off on their own yes, but thats why we have leaders, to prevent people from doing stupid stuff, otherwise why even have leaders?
     :nod: !

I've had Sgts tell me I was doing stupid stuff;  on occasion, some even raised their voices.  Yet somehow, my feelings weren't hurt.  Different times, I guess.  :dunno:


(In hindsight, I imagine some folks wish the NCOs had kept quiet and just let Darwinism do its thing  ;) )

Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Jarnhamar on January 29, 2019, 11:48:48
The Winter warfare/survival "course" is, in my opinion, like the basic Machinegun/support weapons course.

Very minimal information gets passed on about very basic stuff, and we're always taking away material and course time-not adding to it

Alot of the stuff you need to know isn't in the lesson plans but rather passed down through experience.

If privates and corporals aren't taught this stuff then they can't teach and speak to it when they're mcpls and sgts.

There's alot of skill fade and it's because units are too busy trying to cram too much crap into training cycles. Whitespace and budget play a big part, like, your unit only being given a day to do toboggan/tent routine training (and troops have to brown bag their lunch because we can't afford to issue rations).

For the most part winter equipment is fine and in areas improved considerably over the last 20 years-but lessons learned are struggling to survive.

I don't know the story, I have some suspicions on what happened, but I can honestly say the Dragoons are one of the busiest units I know and I can very easily believe basic winter warfare skills get overlooked because they're trying to fill so many no fail tasks.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: medicineman on January 29, 2019, 12:17:26
It would be interesting to see the injury patterns .  Hands and fingers - likely not getting gloves/mitts back on quickly OR wearing gloves instead of mittens, since mittens keep your fingers warmer.  Some people think wearing mittens isn't very "cool"/hard - obviously also don't live or work in cold conditions usually.  Feet - likely not wearing mukluks, not wearing them properly or not changing socks and warming feet when they should.  Face - not wearing balaclava's, face shields, etc.

Where the injuries are often is telling of where the problem is - faces/feet - usually leaders/medics/buddies not looking out for each other, since it's simple to say "Show me our face" or "Look at me" on the march or on breaks, making sure people are warming themselves or changing socks periodically at breaks in the march or during camp routine.  Hands - usually individual soldiers thinking they look dumb wearing mittens...though it can be argued that leaders need to pull those people aside and tell them that mitts are more appropriate for many/most situations and why.  Higher risk in smokers as well, as smoking affects microcirculation to fingies and toesies and elsewhere...besides the obvious bit where they need to hold the cigarette somehow.  There are of course the occasional freezer burn injuries to exposed backsides on the little blue toilet rings, made worse by getting stuck  8).

:2c:

MM
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Haggis on January 29, 2019, 13:22:25
It would be interesting to see the injury patterns .  Hands and fingers - likely not getting gloves/mitts back on quickly OR wearing gloves instead of mittens, since mittens keep your fingers warmer.  Some people think wearing mittens isn't very "cool"/hard - obviously also don't live or work in cold conditions usually.

Not being able to manipulate your weapon as easily in mitts will make people shy away from wearing them. Often they will wear gloves which are ideally suited for dexterity but offer little to no insulation.

Feet - likely not wearing mukluks, not wearing them properly or not changing socks and warming feet when they should.

Was there not a prohibition on driving in mukluks a few years ago? This could have been a contributing factor to armoured troops footwear selection for this activity.

There are of course the occasional freezer burn injuries to exposed backsides on the little blue toilet rings, made worse by getting stuck.

Easily prevented by placing a layer or two of TP over the ring before sitting down.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Jarnhamar on January 29, 2019, 13:38:45
Quote from: Haggis


Easily prevented by placing a layer or two of TP over the ring before sitting down.

Remember all the weekend trips we took to Petawawa in the winter? I used to eat a block of st-Albert's cheese on the way there  to avoid those frozen seats.

One time the cheese had the reverse effect--some (life) lessons aren't learned  in lesson plans   ;D
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: medicineman on January 29, 2019, 18:15:33
Not being able to manipulate your weapon as easily in mitts will make people shy away from wearing them. Often they will wear gloves which are ideally suited for dexterity but offer little to no insulation.

Was there not a prohibition on driving in mukluks a few years ago? This could have been a contributing factor to armoured troops footwear selection for this activity.

Easily prevented by placing a layer or two of TP over the ring before sitting down.


I have never heard of a prohibition on driving in mukluks - and I've only been out for a year and a half.  Having said that, nothing surprises me much, though I'd have thought that a prohibition on parachuting in them would have come first...given I had a harder time driving with upsoled combat boots than I ever did with mukuks really makes me wonder why that would happen.  For weapon handling and other dexterity things, I get that, but there are arctic trigger guards and shooting mitts and the charging handles have been changed such that you don't need to do the split finger grasp to **** the C7/8's.  Arctic mitts have room in them to wear a glove liner - get your hand out and then back in as soon as job is done.  I will confess that my last couple years of reserve time I used my Cabellas hunting mitts a lot - built in gloves, finger cover flips back to expose the gloved fingies, then flip back to warm them up.   The bumburn issue was largely a joke on my part...

MM
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Haggis on January 29, 2019, 18:59:09
I have never heard of a prohibition on driving in mukluks - and I've only been out for a year and a half.
  I recall seeing something ... I retired in December so I can't research it any longer.  Hopefully someone with DWAN access will chime in and set me straight.

For weapon handling and other dexterity things, I get that, but there are arctic trigger guards and shooting mitts and the charging handles have been changed such that you don't need to do the split finger grasp to **** the C7/8's.  Arctic mitts have room in them to wear a glove liner - get your hand out and then back in as soon as job is done. 
Yup, got that, but how many troops actually make the effort to set up their rifle/carbine trigger guard correctly for arctic ops with mitts?  Or will they just wear LCF gloves?

The bumburn issue was largely a joke on my part...

Okay.. but my idea worked/works well.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: PuckChaser on January 29, 2019, 19:28:46
I recall seeing something ... I retired in December so I can't research it any longer.  Hopefully someone with DWAN access will chime in and set me straight.

I remember sometime similar being said mid 2000s into early 2010s. I didn't bother checking into it because I drove in them anyways.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Simian Turner on January 29, 2019, 19:28:51
In Shilo and Gagetown the ranges used to close at -35'C without wind chill.  When I was part of the schools in those locations we still went to the field a lot but not always overnight.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Blackadder1916 on January 29, 2019, 19:59:55

I have never heard of a prohibition on driving in mukluks - . . .    The bumburn issue was largely a joke on my part...


Back when the Earth was still cooling (I think it was sometime in the late 1970s) when one dug a hole, large or small depending on quantity, to accommodate human waste during exercises, there was occasion that a small US Army contingent was with us in Wainwright when the weather was appropriate for "winter warfare".  One of the items of comfort gear that they had with them was an all metal, collapsible, portable camping toilet.  While this may have benefits of durability and ease of cleaning it definitely was not ideal when the temp dipped below freezing.  There was more than one Southern gentleman who, unaccustomed to the weather, found himself stuck to the seat.

As for driving in mukluks, I recall a time (also long ago, it might have even been during that Rapier Thrust previously mentioned) when direction came down that drivers had to wear full winter gear (mukluks, parkas, etc) even when behind the wheel.  On a couple of previous exercises (including a 1 Fd Amb winter ex in Wainwright) there had been some casualties that resulted following vehicle breakdown/accident when the crew/occupants were left stranded for prolonged periods without adequate cold weather gear.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Haggis on January 29, 2019, 20:25:55
I remember sometime similar being said mid 2000s into early 2010s. I didn't bother checking into it because I drove in them anyways.

My memory is kinda fuzzy on it.  the restriction may have been vehicle specific.. I recall something to do with insufficient clearance between the brake and accelerator pedals making it possible to press both while wearing mukluks. Or maybe it was boots, rubber, clumsy.  Like I said..... fuzzy.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Target Up on January 29, 2019, 20:55:49
Anyone who ever drove an M 113 with a dodgy heater across the Wainwright tundra in January would joyfully tell you to go take a flying frig at a rolling bagel if you said he couldn't wear his mukluks.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Eye In The Sky on January 29, 2019, 22:09:51
People don't always listen to 'instruction' either and end up a casualty of the cold.  Last winter, there was a candidate on the Aircrew Arctic Survival course run by CFSSAT, Wpg.  The first serial ran in Jan 2018, one of the student 'insisted' they couldn't work with gloves or mitts on.  Then the staff noticed...the same candidate without a toque or anything on their head.

The staff (mostly SAR Techs) told the mbr to dress right, etc repeatedly.  Student was removed for their own safety shortly after but not without some cold injuries.

It's not exactly warm at Crystal City in January...I recall temps of -50 and colder in the wind.  No gloves/mitts/hat ???
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 29, 2019, 22:11:57
People don't always listen to 'instruction' either and end up a casualty of the cold.  Last winter, there was a candidate on the Aircrew Arctic Survival course run by CFSSAT, Wpg.  The first serial ran in Jan 2018, one of the student 'insisted' they couldn't work with gloves or mitts on.  Then the staff noticed...the same candidate without a toque or anything on their head.

The staff (mostly SAR Techs) told the mbr to dress right, etc repeatedly.  Student was removed for their own safety shortly after but not without some cold injuries.

It's not exactly warm at Crystal City in January...I recall temps of -50 and colder in the wind.  No gloves/mitts/hat ???

Like not wearing a helmet in combat..... people like that need to be released ASAP.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 29, 2019, 23:19:42
Anyone who ever drove an M 113 with a dodgy heater across the Wainwright tundra in January would joyfully tell you to go take a flying frig at a rolling bagel if you said he couldn't wear his mukluks.

Yes I know that feeling all too well.

So today for shytes and giggles I dressed in mukluk like things, ski pants, fleece under a light insulated jacket, with toque and gloves. Shovelled snow for about an hour. No issues other than glasses fogging up.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 29, 2019, 23:57:11
Yes I know that feeling all too well.

So today for shytes and giggles I dressed in mukluk like things, ski pants, fleece under a light insulated jacket, with toque and gloves. Shovelled snow for about an hour. No issues other than glasses fogging up.

And it was only Minus 34, right? :)
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: GAP on January 30, 2019, 00:48:58
And it was only Minus 34, right? :)

With a -51 C windchill......but who is counting....
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 30, 2019, 00:51:29
And it was only Minus 34, right? :)

-35 C. Balmy. Until tonight at -37 and my truck doesn’t start. Still shivering a bit.
The plug ins for block heaters at work are on a timer. So the block isn’t warm, therefore extra strain on the battery and engine. Good thing that cables were available.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: HappyWithYourHacky on January 30, 2019, 09:19:37
With a -51 C windchill......but who is counting....

Yeah, but it was a dry cold.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Rifleman62 on January 30, 2019, 10:22:44
We were in Churchill when it was still an Army cold weather school (??). Storm came up. It was so cold with the windchill that the polar bear sentry had to be pulled in. The safety M113 keep going all night. Saw a Blackbart from Churchill Rocket Research Range launch.

Anyone read or heard on the news about global warming lately? Anything from the Honorable Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change? It seems when there are winter storms or freezing temperatures they shut up.

Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: mariomike on January 30, 2019, 11:01:58
Anyone read or heard on the news about global warming lately?

Someone was tweeting about it,
https://www.google.com/search?q=trump+climate+%22global+warming%22&source=lnt&tbs=qdr:w&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjC2qbA5pXgAhUG4IMKHYBRByMQpwUIJQ&biw=1280&bih=641

For discussion of the subject,

Global Warming/Climate Change Super Thread 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=32987.925
118 pages.



Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: RomeoJuliet on January 30, 2019, 13:12:59
We were in Churchill when it was still an Army cold weather school (??). Storm came up. It was so cold with the windchill that the polar bear sentry had to be pulled in. The safety M113 keep going all night. Saw a Blackbart from Churchill Rocket Research Range launch.

Anyone read or heard on the news about global warming lately? Anything from the Honorable Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change? It seems when there are winter storms or freezing temperatures they shut up.
Why yes as a matter of fact this was tweeted recently by Trump ;

‘In the beautiful Midwest, windchill temperatures are reaching minus 60 degrees, the coldest ever recorded. In coming days, expected to get even colder. People can’t last outside even for minutes. What the hell is going on with Global Waming? Please come back fast, we need you!’


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: SprCForr on January 30, 2019, 17:11:52
Those of you who may know mikeninercharlie, he can attest to a certain Ex Rapier Thrust in '81 or '82 when guys were dropping like flies from all the units in the brigade due to cold injuries.


I don't think I've warmed up yet from that one.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: SprCForr on January 30, 2019, 17:17:01
Anyone who ever drove an M 113 with a dodgy heater across the Wainwright tundra in January would joyfully tell you to go take a flying frig at a rolling bagel if you said he couldn't wear his mukluks.


Yup, or decreeing that civ kit under the issue shite was verboten when driving the things. Full credit to John for sticking up for me (unsuccessfully) with the RSM.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Retired AF Guy on January 30, 2019, 18:22:01
Those of you who may know mikeninercharlie, he can attest to a certain Ex Rapier Thrust in '81 or '82 when guys were dropping like flies from all the units in the brigade due to cold injuries.

This wasn't held in Wainwright by chance?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: expwor on January 30, 2019, 20:44:18
People don't always listen to 'instruction' either and end up a casualty of the cold.  Last winter, there was a candidate on the Aircrew Arctic Survival course run by CFSSAT, Wpg.  The first serial ran in Jan 2018, one of the student 'insisted' they couldn't work with gloves or mitts on.  Then the staff noticed...the same candidate without a toque or anything on their head.

The staff (mostly SAR Techs) told the mbr to dress right, etc repeatedly.  Student was removed for their own safety shortly after but not without some cold injuries.

It's not exactly warm at Crystal City in January...I recall temps of -50 and colder in the wind.  No gloves/mitts/hat ???

Just a civies opinion with a Militia four day Winter Warfare course (2 days theory, 2 days camping) I am no expert. But it sounds like that member wanted off the course.  Member probably listened just ignored and hoped to get an RTU
Again just a very non expert opinion, I'd say my two cents worth but likely not worth even that

Tom
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: sidemount on January 30, 2019, 22:01:32
Back when the Earth was still cooling (I think it was sometime in the late 1970s) when one dug a hole, large or small depending on quantity, to accommodate human waste during exercises, there was occasion that a small US Army contingent was with us in Wainwright when the weather was appropriate for "winter warfare".  One of the items of comfort gear that they had with them was an all metal, collapsible, portable camping toilet.  While this may have benefits of durability and ease of cleaning it definitely was not ideal when the temp dipped below freezing.  There was more than one Southern gentleman who, unaccustomed to the weather, found himself stuck to the seat.

As for driving in mukluks, I recall a time (also long ago, it might have even been during that Rapier Thrust previously mentioned) when direction came down that drivers had to wear full winter gear (mukluks, parkas, etc) even when behind the wheel.  On a couple of previous exercises (including a 1 Fd Amb winter ex in Wainwright) there had been some casualties that resulted following vehicle breakdown/accident when the crew/occupants were left stranded for prolonged periods without adequate cold weather gear.
And this is why shitter socks are a thing, a spare pair of socks can save your *** in a -35 porta-potty...literally. (https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20190131/c196ddbdec23cc0de7aa48c1201b4914.jpg)
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: daftandbarmy on January 30, 2019, 22:28:53
And this is why shitter socks are a thing, a spare pair of socks can save your *** in a -35 porta-potty...literally. (https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20190131/c196ddbdec23cc0de7aa48c1201b4914.jpg)

Awesome. Really.

Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Target Up on January 30, 2019, 23:18:12
This wasn't held in Wainwright by chance?

It was.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Hamish Seggie on January 31, 2019, 00:36:11
This wasn't held in Wainwright by chance?

It were and it were not fun. We’d call it “challenging “ these days.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Fishbone Jones on January 31, 2019, 02:01:37
I had a conversation with someone in Pet yesterday. They said it wasn't just The RCD, that the injuries were spread over the formation.  :dunno: :

Has 'Safety is a command responsibility' become a platitude only uttered on ranges as a checklist item?

Where were the mandatory frostbite checks?

How many troops, weren't informed or checked, by the tent i/c and went to bed fully clothed? I once caught a troop in full winter crew suit, in his complete sleeping bag. I went into his tent, looking for someone and recognised his hood, while he was tucked away. He got pneumonia two days later.

Those are just a couple of winter ops O Gp points. I wonder if they, and the rest of the standard  checklist items were given and/or followed?

Have we lost that much corporate knowledge of winter ops that someone didn't know enough to stop it as soon as certain injuries started to cluster?

Let's hope we learn our lesson and act on it,  securing the best off the shelf stuff available, asap.

Are we still as short of cold weather gear as we were a couple (?) of years ago?
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Infanteer on January 31, 2019, 08:53:23
I had a conversation with someone in Pet yesterday. They said it wasn't just The RCD, that the injuries were spread over the formation.  :dunno: :

Not accurate.  This incident was confined to one unit.

The rest of your points are all valid.
Title: Re: Canadian soldiers suffer frostbite during winter training
Post by: Colin P on January 31, 2019, 11:16:55
Awesome. Really.

Doing mining exploration north of Flin Flon in -25 I carried a piece of Styrofoam with a hole in it to make a insta potty anywhere needed.