Over Use of Diazinon Insecticide Spaying at HHB, 6th Battalion, 56th Artillery (HAWK) area, Long Bien, Vietnam
Medical: The health of the men has been excellent. The medical section has expanded a large portion of its effort in preventive medicine functions to maintain the state of health. Semi permanent field sites in a tropical climate requires constant command attention through field sanitation teams to ensure protection against insect and rodent vectors of disease. Diazinon Insecticide is sprayed three times weekly in messes, latrines and shower and twice weekly in troop tents and quarters. This is more frequent than recommended application, but has been the minimum required to control insects. Local streams and wells are contaminated to a degree that Paul water use on these sites must be purified and chlorinated by Army engineers prior to use. This battalion is using water at a rate of about 7 gallons per man per day for all purposes. This plus the water requirements for the century dogs necessitate that each battery devote one 2 ½ ton truck with two 600 gallon tanks full time to procure water. Running water latrines with septic tanks are not feasible with present water sources; thus, burn-out barrel latrines are use to dispose of human excretes. Most wastes are hauled off site to sanitary fill areas. Waste waters are drained to soakage pits. Individual measures to protect against disease are stressed in training sessions and enforced in troop billets. As a result of these and other efforts, infectious disease has not appreciably affected manpower reserves.
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, HEADQUARTERS, 6TH BATTALION, 56TH ARTILLERY, APO SAN FRANCISCO 96227, Operational Report on Lessons Learned for the Period 1 January 1966 to 30 April 1966, Page 10 – 11, Par e. Medical
Clearing Fields of Fire
This unit’s Long Binh site is situated in a area of heavy underbrush which provides very good concealment to within 20 to 3o meters of the perimeter. The only means available to the unit for clearing this brush is and clearing by troop labor. Because of the large area requirements of a Hawk unit, there are also large areas within the perimeter itself which must be continuously kept cleared. A disproportionate amount of available troop man-hours is required for this purpose.
A chemical defoliate should be made available for use by ADA units in sufficient quantities to achieve continuous control of vegetation in and around battery areas. Estimated savings in man-hours: 1200 man-hours per month. At this time, this headquarters is determining which herbicide is most appropriate for our needs so that it may be requisitioned
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY, HEADQUARTERS, 6TH BATTALION, 56TH ARTILLERY, APO SAN FRANCISCO 96491, Operational Report for Quarterly Period Ending 31 October 1966.