PHOENIX - The Valley will be the site of intense military training over the next week.
Marines from the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) at Camp Pendleton, California are in town for a Realistic Urban Training exercise.
The exercise is designed to help the Marines train in unfamiliar environments and expose them to areas they wouldn't find at their Twentynine Palms ranges.
"This is their last exercise on land," says 1st Lt Maria Arnone. "It's a really good opportunity for them to practice training in an unfamiliar environment and really test their skills in working together with all the different elements of the MEU."
Most of the exercise will take place at night and in restricted areas to limit disruption to the local populations, but there's still a chance that Phoenix residents could spot unusual activity or military aircraft.
"It's cool that we can share our training with the city of Phoenix because they might not get to see stuff like that every day," says Arnone. "It'll be a pleasant sight if they see it."
The Marines are no strangers to Phoenix. A different unit conducted the same exercise in 2017. This year's is scheduled to wrap up March 11.