Training exercise to bring military personnel to St. Thomas, Shedden

Members from 5 Combat Engineer Regiment install a temporary bridge at l’île Verte, in Laval in Quebec. File photo courtesy of DND 2022.

Residents south of London are being told not to be alarmed if they see military personnel trucking heavy equipment around the region this weekend.

Canadian Army Reserve personnel from 31 Combat Engineer Regiment, 31 Service Battalion, and 2 Military Police Regiment will be conducting convoy and bridge construction training in the Shedden area beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday. Army reservists will be transporting bridging equipment between St. Thomas and Shedden and constructing a temporary bridge across Talbot Creek.

The exercise is meant to maintain and develop reservists’ skills in planning, preparation, and execution of a water crossing operation. The ability to quickly build a strong, safe bridge is vital during flooding events and military operations, the Canadian Armed Forces said.

Military Police will be guiding military vehicles along Sunset Drive, John Wise Line, Fingal Line, and Union Road throughout the training activity. The temporary bridge across Talbot Creek will be built at the Open Space Park starting t 7 p.m. on Friday. It will be removed by 7 p.m. on Sunday.

The public is welcome to watch the construction taking place between 9 a.m. and 12 p.m. Saturday. As a safety precaution, drivers passing by the site are asked not to stop on Union Road.

“All measures are being taken to ensure minimum inconvenience to those in the area, however access to certain areas of the Open Space Park will be restricted,” the Canadian Armed Forces said in a statement. “Members of the public are asked to take extra caution when approaching military vehicles, and are thanked in advance for their understanding and co-operation.”

Any weapons used during the training exercise will be unloaded and no live ammunition will be used, the Armed Forces added.