The Union Recorder

December 17, 2012

Emergency training readies officers

From staff reports
The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE — Georgia College and other local emergency responders went through real life scenario training Friday morning. Mock tornado devastation at Oconee Regional Medical Center and a fatal crash scene tested preparedness.

Georgia College Associate Director of Emergency Preparedness Justin Gaines said the primary exercise targeted ORMC's readiness for a full-scale mass casualty incident.

The exercise provides practice and networking opportunities for first responders and agency heads. These conversations prove invaluable during an actual event.

Gaines said a lot of pre-planning occurs to make these exercises happen.

Volunteer victims added to the realism at the Irwin Street student parking lot, which served as the crash site. A Georgia College bus colliding with a small truck gave firefighters and emergency personal the chance to work out the kinks.

Everything from helping the victims to safety to vehicle placement for the quickest access came up in conversation.

If these events played out for real, Georgia College would use the emergency notification system to let students and citizens know to stay away from the area. The alerts effectively warned those nearby during the bomb threat weeks earlier. 

The Georgia College Department of Public Safety divisions include Support Services, Patrol, Investigations, and Emergency Preparedness and Occupational Safety. The campus routinely ranks as one of the safest nationwide.

A proactive approach like the response exercise Friday contributes to the overall quality mindset.

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