Only a drill: Marine unit to undergo urban exercises in Phoenix

- A Marine unit from Camp Pendleton in California is headed to Arizona for training.

The Marines will be holding exercises throughout Phoenix, so don't be alarmed if you see a big military presence in the days ahead. There's about 2,000 marines and sailors involved in a military expeditionary unit, and while not all 2,000 will be in the Valley, at least a portion of them will to hone their urban tactical skills, and that might provide some unusual sights for Valley residents.

"They work their way out to different environments, so they can really practice with a plan," said 1st Lt. Maria Arnone. "They will be doing some raids and subject matter expert exchanges, just to practice their training in an urban environment."

The Valley has been used as a training ground before, with the military conducting exercises around University of Phoenix stadium and in Downtown Phoenix.

So, what can Valley residents expect?

"We're doing all that we can to have a low impact," said 1st Lt. Arnone. "Most of hte training will be at night in blocked off areas. Residents may see some aircraft flying."

1st. Lt Arnone said they are doing everything they can to make sure the public isn't scared.

"It's in restricted areas that are blocked off," said 1st Lt. Arnone. "There's been site surveys, coordination. We're doing everything we can to let the people know there is going to be training going on, but it's nothing to worry about."

The exercise is the second in a series of trainings before the marines are deployed.

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