Mock disaster drill held for emergency responders

Mock disaster drill held for emergency responders

Thursday, October 27, 2011 5:52 PM CDT

An emergency response drill at the Bartlesville Municipal Airport on Wednesday went well, local officials reported during a press conference held yesterday.

About 100 people representing 10 agencies took part in the event, Bartlesville Fire Department Assistant Chief and Public Information officer Bill Hollander told media representatives after the event.

“We simulated a jet airplane crash at the Bartlesville airport,” Hollander said. “We used a school bus to stand in for an airplane fuselage.”

In addition to the BFD, participating agencies included the Washington County Emergency Management Office, Dewey Fire Department, Bartlesville Police Department, Bartlesville Ambulance Service, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, ConocoPhillips, American Red Cross, Jane Phillips Medical Center and Tri-County Technology Center’s Nursing Department.

According to a press release issued prior to the event, the purpose of the exercise was to test the effectiveness of the airport’s emergency response plan — as well as local and state response — to a simulated incident at the airport.

Hollander said Wednesday that about 30 nursing students served as victims in the scenario.

“They were made up to look like they had been injured,” he said. “The makeup used was very realistic.”

Responders performed victim rescue, triage, site security and crowd control. Emergency vehicles responded to the event but only ran with lights and sirens a short distance from Highway 123 and Highway 60 to the airport.

“We really want to test ourselves and wanted to learn what we did well and what we didn’t do so well,” Hollander said.

Bartlesville Police Chief Tom Holland said that in doing the exercise, he hoped “to improve our response capability.”

“Anytime you have a downed airplane in the United States it is considered a crime scene,” Holland said.

Jane Phillips Medical Center spokesman Mike Wilt said that hospital staff would be doing training drills as well.

“We find a lot of value in trainings like this,” Wilt said.

Hollander said that overall, the event was a success.

“In 25 years, this is the biggest drill I’ve been a part of,” he said.


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