Wednesday, January 18, 2012

BMT: Reporting Statements and Accountability

Reporting Statements


Feel like talking at BMT?  Don't even think about opening your mouth unless you're standing at attention when you speak to an MTI, and before you blurt anything out, give your reporting statement.


Sir/Ma'am, trainee Carpenter reports as ordered.

Once you're acknowledged, you may proceed with your question.  Yes, you will get yelled at if you don't give a reporting statement.  Even if you're being spoken to first, you must give a reporting statement.  You can imagine how rewarding it was to change that statement to, "Sir/Ma'am, Airman Carpenter reports as ordered," once we graduated and before we shipped out.

Accountability

One of my main jobs as a Dorm Chief was accountability.  Every night I was required to go down to "The Tunnel," the hallway of offices in the squadron, and report accountability to the MTI working CQ (Charge of Quarters).  I would have to take a wingman with me, as it was after dark.  Don't forget Brother Flight either!  The Dorm Chief from B-9 would come with me, as we were responsible for each other.  All of the dorm chiefs would stand out on the dot, in numerical order.  Being in Dorm B-10, I was typically the last one, which meant I was usually the last one back upstairs, getting ready for bed.  The other girls in my flight typically got stuck doing my details and cleaning my area.

While we waited to be called into the tunnel, we would stand outside on the dots, studying our BMTSGs.  The 8th week DCs would stand off to the side, facing the younger Dorm Chiefs, and ensuring that they were all present.  It was also a useful time to casually converse with other Dorm Chiefs - some of the only time we had with members of the opposite sex.  Being a Dorm Chief is a stressful job, so it was refreshing to have a normal conversation again with others who knew the same stresses.  We would also take the time to educate the new dorm chiefs on the procedures and protocols for accountability.

Once called in we would silently file into the tunnel, and wait for our turn to approach CQ.  When doing so, you always had to exude confidence and be sure about your facing movements.  We would march up to the window, left face, and then state the following once acknowledged:

Sir/Ma'am, trainee Carpenter reports as ordered.
Dorm Chief, Dorm B-10, Flight 494.
Accountability is as follows:
52 [trainees] assigned, 52 accounted for.
Weapons accountability is as follows:
52 assigned, 52 accounted for.
The current temperature of the dormitory is 75 degrees.

If there was any discrepancy in my numbers, I had to be prepared to justify them.  If my numbers didn't match my MTIs' numbers, I'd better know why.  Where exactly were my trainees?  Where were weapons?  If a Dorm Chief approached CQ looking unsure of themself, the MTI would surely send them away (and not politely) to pull it together.  Older Dorm Chiefs would have to counsel them and give them a pep talk.  This all sounds very easy, but the process was intimidating, especially in the beginning.  You were easily picked off in the tunnel by MTIs going in and out.  As I became more comfortable, I would greet the MTIs leaving the squadron for the night.

Yes, I did this every night, for eight and a half weeks.  It was the only time I caught a glimpse of the TV, that was kept there to keep MTIs awake.  I remember sneaking a quick peak at NCIS one night.  Oh, the little things!

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