17 February 2023
Soldiers with shields, unruly role players and snapping canines were all that was needed to run a population protection control (PPC) scenario in Townsville.
Personnel from the 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (3RAR), with the support of the 1st Military Police Battalion (1MP), conducted PPC training at Lavarack Barracks.
The course focused on soldiers’ individual PPC training while ensuring the ready battle group met the qualifications required of the ADF’s contingency operational response element.
Infantry sections integrated closely with military police arrest teams, detainee processing capabilities, and military working dogs to enhance security and crowd dispersion.
Captain Nicholas Crosbie, from 3RAR’s Alpha Company, said PPC was a non-lethal combat technique to maintain control, detain and protect populations.
“PPC is primarily used to assist allied or partner forces to maintain protection and control in a stability operation situation,” Captain Crosbie said.
The PPC training involved a practical run-through followed by a full mission profile, with a realistic scenario of aggressive protesters designed to push the soldiers’ endurance threshold.
Captain Crosbie said role players deliberately pushed their soldiers to the limit, simulating a real-life scenario.
“During the full mission profile, soldiers are tested on how well they can keep a level-head amongst the chaos and practise sustaining a steady level of adrenaline over an extended period of time,” Captain Crosbie said.
“The training is robust - building resilience individually and as a team.”