Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

April 28, 2013

Tri-state airport drill tests disaster skills

Large-scale mock emergency brought together 30 area agencies

Kenova — First responders faced a grim scenario when they  gathered for a large-scale drill at the Huntington Tri-State Airport on Saturday.

A Boeing 737 carrying 120 passengers, the majority with mental or physical disabilities, experienced engine trouble before crashing on the runway and catching fire.

As part of the full-scale disaster drill, more than 30 area agencies, including seven fire departments, four emergency  medical service stations, two local 911 centers, three local medical centers and a host of county, state and federal agencies, responded as they would in a real life situation.

 The drill, required every three years, tested all aspects of an emergency response, from extinguishing the flames to assessing and transporting victims to handling the media that show up at a scene. Local students played the crash victims and were actually transported to local medical centers so they too could get in on the action.

Airport Director Jerry Brienza said operations appeared to be going well Saturday morning. “These drills pull together all our emergency personnel in the region,” he said, noting the face-to-face contact between agencies is the most valuable part of the exercise.

“They may have been talking to some of these guys on the phone for so long, but they have put a face to a name, and then they share what resources they have available, which is usually the breakdown in a lot of these things — whose got what equipment and where can we use it responsibly,” Brienza explained.

“This gets them all together, and they talk and hammer out who has what equipment and how can it be best utilized, and things just start to tie together when they are out here on the scene,” he added.

During a real emergency, Brienza said, responders are not stationed  feet away from the scene with gear ready to go and having just reviewed their pre-plans. Practicing helps though, he added.

“In a real life situation, things change, but hopefully they come together and you don’t have to think about it. You just do it,” he said.

Observers from a variety of federal, state and local agencies were also on hand to evaluate the drill and offer criticisms that will hopefully make the next response even better, according to officials. In addition to the large-scale drill every three years, the airport undergoes a “table top” drill annually.

Brienza said he is confident Saturday’s drill will continue to illustrate how well-prepared local officials are to handle any emergency situation.

“I think we have one of the finest regional emergency crews in the area,” said Brienza. “We have mutual aid agreements with all these agencies, and they have been extremely cooperative. All these people have built such a relationship that they know what the other is doing before they even do it,” he added.

CARRIE STAMBAUGH can be reached at (606) 369-2635

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 0419sciencehs.JPG Russell High School wins State Science Olympiad

    The long ride home from Bowling Green was tinged with disappointment for Russell High School students who believed they’d finished as also-rans in the state Science Olympiad last weekend.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0419sciencems.JPG Russell Middle School state Science Olympiad champions

    From identifying hundreds of insects to designing and operating mechanical contraptions that just look like insects, a team of Russell Middle School students took their research and technical skills to the Science Olympiad in Bowling Green last week and came back state champions.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0419melodies0148.jpg Kitchen jazzes up downtown lunch hour

    Some came to enjoy the relaxing sounds of cool jazz and traditional tunes at lunch, while others attended in hopes of picking up a few tricks from a master musician as guitarist Chris Kitchen kicked off the Melodies & Masterpieces concert series in downtown Ashland Friday afternoon.

    April 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • Sparks, Waddell in Carter Coronor’s race

    Incumbent George A. Sparks of Grayson will face challenger William Waddell of Olive Hill in the Democratic primary election for the Carter County coroner’s seat.

    April 18, 2014

  • 04/18/2014 — What's Happening

    Local news

    April 18, 2014

  • Bill3.jpg 'Dreams'

    It was in her own death that Donna Schoonover helped William Schoonover redefine his life.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • guyp-rodnew.jpg 'Uplifting people'

    The snow kept gospel singer Guy Penrod chilling a little longer than it should have this spring.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418star0024.jpg Raising the roof

    Leaks will soon be a thing of the past at Star Elementary School, where workers are busy putting up a new roof.
     

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fire at Russell care facility

    A care facility for the elderly in Russell was temporarily evacuated following a fire in the kitchen Wednesday night.
     

    April 18, 2014

  • Incumbent, newcomer vie for PVA position

    A longtime office-holder is facing a rare primary challenge in the Greenup County property valuation administrator race.

    April 18, 2014

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP basketball
SEC Zone