Hawaii Army commander implores soldiers to help reduce burning of abandoned vehicles
FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii – Army Garrison Hawaii is again tackling the seemingly perpetual problem of abandoned vehicles on facilities by launching the week-long Operation Clean Sweep Monday.
The goal is to remove 240 vehicles believed to be abandoned, primarily at Schofield Barracks in central Oahu, while making it easier for soldiers to properly dispose of automobiles when leaving the island in the future. .
Seventy-four vehicles were towed on Monday, the Directorate of Emergency Services and the 8th Military Police Brigade said in a Facebook post.
The initiative has the support of the big guns of the garrison.
A clearly miffed Major General Joe Ryan, commander of the garrison and the 25th Infantry Division, appears in a Facebook video posted on Monday standing amid rows of ramshackle cars in a resale ‘lemon lot’ on Schofield , accompanied by the Division Command Sgt. Major Robert Haynie.
“We’re not in a dump,” Ryan says. “We are not in a park of abandoned vehicles. We are in a used car resale lot. If you look behind me…” – the duo turn to look at a pair of vehicles with their wheels missing, one with the front completely crumpled and the engine missing – “whoever left these two vehicles here, these are not going to sell in the used car resale lot.
“And it affects all your teammates because I’m using all my money and their money and our budget to pay to get this…” Ryan sputters as he pushes the junker behind him “…load of bullshit out of here .”
Abandoned cars are a problem across Oahu, but the frequent comings and goings of military personnel stationed on the island creates a particularly acute problem for military installations here.
Last year, the Army instituted a policy requiring all soldiers, civilian employees, and their family members to register the vehicles they drive on Schofield, Wheeler Army Airfield, Fort Shafter, and all owned or managed accommodations. by the army.
Any Soldier exiting an Army installation is required to present proof of shipment, sale, or disposal of vehicles registered under this policy.
Garrison said in a Facebook comment on Monday that identifying an apparently abandoned vehicle is just the start of a very long process of finding the registered owner. As part of the required legal process, the Garrison must contact each registered owner to verify that a vehicle has been abandoned.
“So what I’m asking you to do is be responsible for your vehicle and not abandon it,” Ryan says in the video. “We have a plan, and we’re going to help you do it.”
Soldiers can simply drive an unwanted vehicle to the Automotive Skills Center in Schofield, where the registration can be transferred and the car left.
“It doesn’t cost you a dime,” Ryan said.
Can’t start this junker?
“Contact your chain of command,” Ryan said. “We’ll come get it for you. We’ll tow it there. We will do what it takes to get there. Do not abandon your vehicle.