Range Safety Briefing

Training for WSMR Vehicle Operators

Video - Driving on Rough Terrain or Unimproved Roads

Team White Sands members permanently assigned to White Sands Missile Range who operate government vehicles are required to view the Driving on Rough Terrain or Unimproved Roads safety awareness video. In addition to training as outlined in AR 600-55, drivers must view the video to comply with White Sands Missile Range initial and sustainment drivers' training requirements. For more information contact the WSMR Government Licensing Office, building 1838, (575) 678-3344.

Oryx Alert

Video - Oryx, Not in a Vacuum. Drivers Watch Out!"

The video, "Oryx, Not in a Vacuum. Drivers Watch Out!" emphasizes the need to maintain situational awareness while driving within White Sands Missile Range (WSMR). Although Oryx have contributed to numerous accidents on the range, drivers are urged to be alert for a variety of animals and environmental hazards which can be found throughout the range. Situation awareness is the key to accident avoidance.

Safety Tips for Driving on White Sands Missile Range.

Many destinations on WSMR require extensive travel which can lead to driver complacency and fatigue. When traveling throughout WSMR follow these basic driving tips:

  • Ensure your vehicle is in good condition. Most range areas are remote having limited vehicle and personnel traffic. If your vehicle breaks down, you may find yourself stranded and waiting for hours before assistance arrives.
  • Plan. Plan your route of travel. Perform risk planning based to the risks which could occur or are expected to be encountered. Primary range roads should be used as much as possible to avoid extended and unnecessary travel on unimproved roads. Ensure others are informed on your route of travel and expected arrival, departure, and return time. Check road block information to preclude travel delays and scheduling conflicts. If possible, do not deviate from your planned route of travel.
  • Follow posted speed limits. The vehicle speed limit on improved range roads is 55 MPH. Maximum vehicle speed on unimproved roads is 25 MPH. During limited visibility or hazardous road conditions vehicle speed should be as necessary to avoid accidents.
  • Avoid traveling alone. WSMR employees are required to use a two-person rule when traveling and performing certain activities outside the cantonment area. Personnel are urged to use the two-person at all times when traveling up range.
  • Establish and maintain radio or telephone communication. Cell phone coverage on the range is sporadic and limited at best. Two-way radio provides the best means of communicating in remote locations on the range.
  • Avoid fatigue. Ensure you are well rested prior to driving long distances on the range. Take rest breaks as needed and switch drivers to maintain alertness and avoid fatigue.
  • Stay Alert and Maintain Situational Awareness. Be alert for changing environmental and road conditions. Rain may produce flooding or render roads unusable. High winds can effect vehicle control and create dust storms severely restricting visibility. Wildlife can enter the roadway causing possible vehicle damage and personnel injuries.

Remember the 3 R's of UXO Safety

What to do if you encounter UXO:

  • Recognize it.  Maintain Situational Awareness
  • Retreat.  Leave the area, the same way it was entered
  • Report it.  Warn other in the vicinity

Call 911 or 678-1234 on a WSMR land line or (575) 678-1234 with a cell.

Heat Injury Prevention

Summer Safety Focus: Avoid Heat Injuries

Hazards Prevention Measures
Dehydration Hydration (drink plenty of water)
Heat Syncope Provide adequate shelter
Heat Cramps Adjust work schedule to reduce exposure
Heat Exhaustion Continually monitor yourself and others for symptoms
Heat Stroke Be proactive (Know actions in case of injury or emergency)

Mandatory UXO Training

WSMR Unexploded Ordinance

Mandatory requirement for personnel traveling outside the cantonment area.
Click the link above to navigate to the WSMR Unexploded Ordinance webpage.

NWS Heat Index Chart

Heat Index temperature chart

Monsoon Hazards: Flash Floods

Desert Flash Floods

Personnel traveling on White Sands Missile Range must be aware of the increase potential for flash floods during the rain or monsoon season. Flash floods can occur without adequate warning, partially due to significant amounts of rainfall along the mountains and precipitous terrain leading to low lying desert basins throughout the range area.

A seemingly insignificant rain shower along the Organ, San Andreas, or Oscura mountain ranges can prove deadly to unsuspecting individuals occupying mountain valleys, low lying terrain, range wetlands, and depressions.

Increase your situational awareness

  • Check the local weather forecast throughout the day.
  • Monitor current and changing weather conditions in your area.
  • Evacuate the area or moving to higher ground, if you are positioned in a potential flash flood area.
  • Slow down when driving in the rain. Be especially careful crossing water and runoff channels on roadways. If you cannot accurately assess the water depth - DO NOT cross a runoff channel.