Mississippi Gate Delays
Published November 19, 2014
I would imagine that my comment will be one of many you receive for the traffic problems at the Mississippi Gate this morning; however, I would like to add a different spin. I have a 21-year background in security police on the law enforcement side, so I have some experience in handling gate issues. I noticed, in particular today, that there were only three commercial vehicles in the truck lane as I approached the gate this morning around about 6:45 a.m. I also noticed that only one inbound lane for vehicles was being utilized. When I arrived in line, the traffic on Dunkirk was backed over the hill and a bit around the curve. This amount of backed up traffic was highly unusual.
When I got to the gate, I noticed two security forces members and two augmentees working the single lane of vehicle traffic. I asked the technical sergeant who handled my ID about the problem and why the other lane was not open. He said the scanners were not working. It took me about 15 minutes to get in the gate; however, I was one of the lucky ones. Several of my co-workers were waiting for considerably longer.
When I called the law enforcement desk, I was told that additional pressure was being placed on the gates to use the DBIDS scanners. He said that only a handful of scanners were currently working and that base leadership was aware of the problem. I recognize that technology is important; however, the technical sergeant who helped me was not using a DBIDS scanner, nor were any of the augmentees. Why was the other entrance lane not utilized? Why were no additional security forces members being utilized to handle the obvious vehicle traffic problem? What will be done to correct the problem in the future? If you are currently able to handle IDs without DBIDS scanners while your other ones get fixed, what was the problem today?
Thank you for your time and consideration. I would like to receive a response to my inquiry.
Thank you very much for your submission on the Mississippi Gate entry delay. We will continue to improve our entry and exit procedures from on BAFB. You're spot on, as we clearly need to make improvements, particularly involving large vehicles, trucks and personnel entry during high-traffic times while ensuring safety and security.
In line with that critical mission priority, there has been a recent push across the Air Force to integrate new database-driven technologies into base defense operations. For example, the DBIDS system we use creates an electronic gateway to supplement our defense force and enhance their ability to mitigate criminal or terrorist threats to the installation. However, like most technological devices, there will invariably be transitional periods of system failures that will directly impact base entry procedures.
Based on your quality feedback, we are also revising our processes to ensure recall of additional Defenders and augmentees to mitigate and manage base ingress and egress during any traffic surges. Thanks for helping us B3T! Building a Better Buckley Together!