EMPORIA (AP) -- About 160 members of the Virginia National Guard are being deployed to Afghanistan.

The members of the Emporia-based 1710th Transportation Company begin federal active duty on Monday.

A departure ceremony is set for Wednesday at Greensville County Elementary School. The guard members will conduct mobilization training at Fort Hood, Texas, for 45 to 60 days. They then will deploy to Afghanistan for a year.

While in Afghanistan the 1710th Transportation Company will conduct transportation support operations.

In February, the company trained at Fort Pickett on several battle drills, including react to ambush, react to contact and evacuate a casualty and also conducted IED lanes training, weapons qualification and continued driver's training for the U.S. Army's Palletized Load System.

The Guard says the 1710th Transportation Company last served on federal active duty in Iraq, where they provided medium lift transportation capabilities that moved critical supplies from logistical support areas out to forward operating bases from May 2008 to February 2009. The unit traveled routes throughout Iraq and conducted more than 75 missions, traveling more than 900,000 miles.

AP-WF-04-01-13 0709GMT

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