City of Amarillo trains for a mass casualty attack
Wed, 30 Oct 2013 23:46:51 GMT —
More than 2,000 people gathered for a mass casualty training exercise at the Amarillo Globe News Center.
Volunteers, all of the first responders, city leaders and the three major hospitals participated.
Though there are training exercises every year, this was the first year that the city played out a terrorism scenario.
The storyline consisted of a bomb that went off in the Amarillo Globe News Center. The explosion injured 200 people and killed 25. The suspect was later killed in a car accident.
"This is easily the largest exercise that we've done in the 17 years that Iâ??ve been involved with emergency management,â?? said Kevin Starbuck, head of emergency management for Amarillo.
Though all of the departments train for emergency situations, an activity like this gives the chance for all parts of the city to come together.
â??We're just kind of bringing all the entities together in one large scenario and playing it out and finding out where the weak spots are. Finding out what we're strong at and making sure we have everything covered,â?? said Cpt. Jacob Oehlert, Amarillo Fire Department.
While first responders were attending to the victims, city leaders were doing their part in the Emergency Operations Center.
A team of 50 people observed the event and will provide feedback.
In addition, all of the agencies will exchange feedback and critiques.
â??After every drill, all the involved agencies will sit down and go over anything they've seen ariseâ?¦Any problems that have come up that can only be solved through being connected to some of the other agencies we're involved with,â?? said Sgt. Brent Barbee, Amarillo Police Department.