Transportation Company prepares for Transfer of Authority

Story and photos by Cpt. David O. Harlan
additional photos provided by Pfc. Brynn Stoll
396th Transportation Company
13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs

CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE ADDER, Iraq — With only a short amount of time left at Contingency Operating Base Adder, Iraq, the 396th Transportation Company, 110th Combat Support Sustainment Battalion, 224th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) prepared May 29 to receive its replacement, the 15th Transportation Company out of Fort Sill, Okla. 

To prevent any accountability problems during the transfer of authority, personnel are addressing the process before their replacements arrive by conducting layouts and inventories of all of the unit’s equipment.

Another area of emphasis leading up to the transfer process is maintenance.

“Most of these vehicles were built in the early ‘90s and have seen a lot miles over the years,” said Sgt. 1st Class Michael Brown, motor sergeant with the 396th Trans. Co. and a Statesboro, Ga., native. 

Operators and mechanics are inspecting each of the company’s vehicles, in turn, to ensure that the 15th Trans. Co. receives the best possible fleet when they arrive.

“We didn’t get the best vehicles when we came to Iraq,” said Sgt. Ryan Gandolfo, a team leader with the 396th Trans. Co. and a San Francisco native. “I drove my truck on my last deployment to Taji in 2007 and the unit that replaced us there didn’t take good care of it.  I’ve put a lot of work into this truck to keep it on the road and I want to make sure that my replacement gets a better vehicle than I did,”

The transportation company is also making an effort to put the finishing touches on its facilities after its move to COB Adder, Iraq.  New air conditioners for the motor pool are one of the last, but most welcome, improvement the company is implementing.