Heat Stress Illness in a Mechanized Infantry Brigade During Simulated Combat at Fort Irwin
ARMY RESEARCH INST OF ENVIRONMENTAL MEDICINE NATICK MA
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This report provides environmental temperature data and descriptive heat stress casualty statistics for an active duty mechanized infantry brigade during a three week training rotation, in August 1992, at the US Army National Training Center NTC, Fort Irwin, California. Mean and standard deviation for noontime ambient temperatures were 104.3 - 6.0 deg F dry bulb, 129.0 - 7. 5 deg F black globe, 71.4 - 2.6 deg F wet bulb, 86.2 - 3.3 OF WBGT. Between 13-19 August 17 days inclusive, 520 soldiers were evaluated at the brigade medical company treatment tent with a mean of 31 - 16 per-day range 14 - 58. Of these 520 patients, 90 had heat stress illnesses for an average of 5 - 3 heat casualties per day range 0 - 13. Heat stress casualties comprised 20 - 13 of the total number of daily patients range 0 - 48. The rite of beat stress illness for the brigade was relatively low despite high VBGTs and rapid paced training scenarios. The NTC is recommended as a location for further USARIEM research on the practical military effects of hot-dry heat stress on soldiers health and performance as well as delineating the logistical requirements that heat related casualties impose on supporting medical units.
- Stress Physiology