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Cannon hosts 11th iteration of EMT Rodeo

Troops in humvees prepare for EMT Rodeo

Emergency medical technician teams, role players and raters prepare to begin opening scenarios for the EMT Rodeo at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, on Aug. 8, 2018. The EMT Rodeo is designed to test the skills of Air Force medical technicians in both deployed and home installation environments. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

EMTs flip tires

Medics from the Air Force Academy, Colorado, participate in the Commando Challenge scenario on Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. The Commando Challenge tested the Emergency Medical Technicians’ skills by requiring them to climb, vault and shoot their way through various obstacles. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Medic climbs wall

An Emergency Medical Technician team member from the Air Force Academy, Colorado, vaults a climbing wall during the Commando Challenge scenario during the EMT Rodeo at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. The challenges presented allow team members to test their skills, learn their strengths and weaknesses and improve on their overall execution. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Medics carry litter

Medics from the Air Force Academy, Colorado, hold a mannequin on a litter while another team member clears a building, allowing a safe place for treatment at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. There were several types of training dummies used throughout the EMT Rodeo, including accurately weighted dolls to animatronic limbs, allowing for realistic experiences. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Medics run toward patients

A medical team from McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas, rushes to a medical emergency scenario at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. The 2018 EMT Rodeo allowed 21 medical teams from various Air Force bases around the world to participate in scenarios designed to hone their skills. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Medics escorted to cover

Members of the McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas, Emergency Medical Technician team are escorted as they prepare to run for cover at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. Though the EMT Rodeo is focused on members of various medical backgrounds, members of other agencies such as security and operational forces assisted to increase the authenticity of the scenarios for the best possible training. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Medics treating "deployed" injuries

A team of Emergency Medical Technicians from Otis Air National Guard Base, Massachusetts, assists a role player with injuries sustained in a simulated deployed environment at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. Melrose AFR allows the EMT Rodeo to prepare scenarios within an environment that simulates a deployed location, enabling unique training. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

EMTs save patient

Emergency Medical Technicians from Minneapolis-St. Paul Air Reserve Station, Minnesota, prepare to carry an injured patient to a safe area and begin treatment at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. The EMT Rodeo is designed to test the skills of Air Force medical technicians in both deployed and home installation environments. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

Patient receives skin cleansing

A role player in the EMT Rodeo receives treatment for multiple wounds during a simulated chemical attack scenario at Melrose Air Force Range, New Mexico, Aug. 8, 2018. The EMT Rodeo scenarios at MAFR focus on skills needed for medical treatment in a deployed environment that many technicians are not as familiar with. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Charles Dickens)

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- The 27th Special Operations Medical Group hosted 21 Air Force emergency medical technician teams from bases around the world for the 11th annual EMT Rodeo Aug. 7-10, 2018, at Cannon Air Force Base and Melrose Air Force Range.

The EMT Rodeo is a competition consisting of four-person teams competing against each other. They operate under various realistic medical emergency scenarios designed to test the teams’ skills and knowledge of assorted medical treatments in both home station and deployed environments.

“We spend about eight months digging real deep into every single scenario, cross-checking them with things that have happened downrange,” said Tech. Sgt. Marc Villano, 2018 EMT Rodeo co-chair. “We’re trying to let the teams run these scenarios however they can. If they mess up, then the scenario is going to go that way. If they’re going to go down a rabbit hole, we let them go down that hole.”

Cannon AFB uses MAFR for half of the competition to simulate a deployed environment, allowing for unique training opportunities the EMT teams may not have easy access to.

“The places we’re going in the real world kind of look and sound like [MAFR],” Villano said. “That’s one thing about training--you want to train as close to how you fight as possible.”

Though battlefield medical skills are important, the EMT Rodeo also assists in honing home station emergency skills.

“There is so much, as a medic, that we can do,” said Staff Sgt. Mica Williams, 2018 EMT Rodeo co-chair. “Some of these skills we’re not using on a daily basis, so when they come here to train, we’re using all of those skills just so they can keep current.”

The EMT Rodeo committee is chaired by Cannon AFB medical professionals, however even the team can’t predict what will be most beneficial to everyone.

“We listen to the teams while they’re here,” Williams said. “They throw out hints saying ‘why don’t you guys do this scenario’ or ‘why don’t you guys have this type of scenario.’ We try to incorporate some of those things to make the next year’s rodeo even better.”

For many teams, 2018 was the first time they’ve experienced Cannon AFB’s EMT Rodeo.

“This is my first time at the EMT Rodeo here at Cannon,” said Staff Sgt. Brendan Sullivan, Otis Air National Guard Base, Mass., medical technician. “We were told all about it, and as soon as we got the opportunity, we jumped on it.”

Of the 21 participating teams, the winning team of this year’s EMT Rodeo was Kadena Air Base, Japan.

“The EMT Rodeo is definitely beneficial to the practice of being an EMT in a clinic, on an ambulance or when you’re deployed,” Sullivan said. “I definitely recommend, if you get the opportunity to attend the EMT Rodeo, that you do it. The training here is phenomenal.”