Specially trained soldiers from the Royal Bermuda Regiment were out in force for the opening day of the America’s Cup on land and on the water. Troops performed security checks on visitors at Cross Island and patrolled the waters around the venue with the Bermuda Police Service marine police. The Regiment also provided divers for sub-sea security work around Cross Island and rescue swimmers attached to the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service.
Private Keno Fox, 25, from St George’s Parish, who was working at the security gate, said: “It’s very hard work and we’re standing up for long hours. But we’re a vital part of the security effort.
Pte Fox, a security officer in civilian life, added: “People are anxious to get through, but they understand we have to do our job.”
Private Jordan Lamb, 26, a maintenance worker from Smith’s, said: “Everybody has been cooperative. Being a uniformed service makes it look good as well. A lot of people have complimented us on our appearance, especially the tourists.”
And Lance Corporal Dijon Arruda added: “There were very minimal delays and the feedback from the guests was great. A lot of people said they were amazed at how polite we were. Tourists have been fascinated and they’re happy to see people in uniform.”
Soldiers also manned the security checkpoint at the superyacht berths on the other side of the village.
Private Trakinna Anderson, just five months into his RBR career and member of the Regimental Police, said: “It’s a really big experience – I’ve never done anything like this before. People have been very appreciative of what we’re doing.”
Carlos Arruza, from Florida and off the superyacht Action, said he had had a minor problem with his pass, which soldiers sorted out quickly.
He added: “They have been excellent – the soldiers are great. In the United States, that would have been painful. Here, your guys are pretty good dudes.”
Second Lieutenant Alex Gibbs, was one of two RBR soldiers attached the Bermuda Fire & Rescue medical boat as rescue swimmers.
2nd Lt Gibbs said: “There were a lot of people on the water, but it was quiet. We’re also doing explosive ordnance disposal diving work around the event village with our operational support divers. Our role has expanded with our diving and rescue capabilities.”
RBR Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel David Curley added: “The operational side is going very well. The screening is designed to move large crowds through and we’re achieving our aims.
“And, with attachments to the Marine Police out on the water, there are a lot of soldiers working behind the scenes, not just in visible roles. All members of the team, from commanders down to the private solider are making it happen.”
Col. Curley added: “I’ve had some very good feedback from members of the public and key Bermudians. We just have to maintain this for the next six weeks, but our commitment is there.”
The RBR was bolstered by a team from the British Army, including explosives experts from the Royal Logistics Corps and explosives sniffer dog Katy, a two year old Labrador and her handler, Sergeant Kiel Jolly of the Royal Army Veterinary Corps.
Sgt Jolly said: “We have been looked after very really well by the RBR. We can’t fault them, to be honest and they have been doing their jobs very professionally.”
In addition, the opening ceremony was enhanced by the RBR Band and Corps of Drums, under the command of Major Dwight Robinson.
Maj. Robinson said: “We’re doing the opening ceremony, security work and the band is preparing for the Queen’s Birthday Parade as well.
“The Regiment is nothing if not versatile – we get in and we get it done.”
A Regiment career offers recruits opportunities to travel, acquire skills useful in civilian life, test themselves to their limits and competitive rates of pay, as well as a $500 bounty for new volunteers. For more information, call 238-1045 or visit www.bermudaregiment.bm.