Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Fort Carson Mountaineer

Creating safe spaces: Soldiers build partitions for isolated patients

By Sgt. Gabrielle Weaver | 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs Office, 4th Infantry Division

FORT CARSON, Colo. — Alpha Company, 52nd Brigade Engineering Battalion, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, began constructing partitions for isolated Soldiers at the Centennial Regional Training Institute (RTI) April 9, 2020, at Fort Carson.

Maj. Gen. Matthew W. McFarlane, commanding general, 4th Inf. Div. and Fort Carson, directed the construction in keeping with the installation’s effort to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

The partitions also assisted Task Force Contain; a team created under McFarlane’s directive to use preventative measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 within Fort Carson.

“Our company was tasked to build partitions to give Task Force Contain the ability to isolate Soldiers,” said Capt. James McAuliffe, commanding officer of Alpha Company, 52nd Brigade Eng. Bn., 2nd IBCT. “What these partitions do is take 10-man open bays and separate them into four sections, allowing the division and brigade commander to place four Soldiers per bay instead of one.”

McAuliffe divided his company into three teams to accomplish this mission. The teams were assigned to cut, assemble or install the partitions.

“(The partitions) are being built in the Alpha Company motor pool,” McAuliffe said. “We use power tools and (structural framing lumber) to construct these partitions.”

The frames of the partitions are then loaded into a trailer and transported to the RTI. Frames are wrapped completely with black, heavy duty plastic to create the partition once they are installed into their designated bay.

“When the Soldier recovers, (it is) wiped down with bleach so it is ready for the next person,” McAuliffe said.

Approximately 100 partitions have been installed throughout two barracks buildings at the RTI.

“We are providing a safe space for people who need to be isolated,” said 1st Lt. Jordan Buttermore, quality assurance quality control manager with Alpha Company, 52nd Brigade Eng. Bn., 2nd IBCT. “Our Soldiers are working hard, they know COVID-19 has been a serious issue and they want to help in whatever way they can.”

Creating safe spaces: Soldiers build partitions for isolated patients
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