Emergency response training planned for Middle Park High School Sept. 23
On Friday, Sept. 23, emergency vehicles and aircraft will convene at Middle Park High School for a drill meant to prepare Grand County for the possibility of an unprecedented emergency, including a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or explosive attack. A wide range of emergency response agencies will gain real-world training through simulated incidents held at the cordoned off high school. These incidents could range from true explosions to clouds of smoke.
The Grand County Sheriff’s Office, Granby Police Department, Fraser Winter Park Police Department and Grand County Office of Emergency Management, in conjunction with over 18 local, state and federal emergency response agencies, will be participating in the Integrated Response Exercise at the high school, which will be closed to the public to create a secure environment. The training will take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be multiple emergency vehicles, aircraft and loud noises in the area throughout the day as the agencies and volunteer participants act out worst-case scenarios.
This training is possible through a grant from the Department of Homeland Security. Instructors from Louisiana State University agreed to work with Grand County at no cost to participating agencies.
“Grand County is extremely fortunate to have this training opportunity,” said Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin. “… Unfortunately, critical incidents sometimes happen even in small and connected communities like ours. This is why training for our most difficult days is vital for our response agencies.”
The course is designed to improve interagency collaboration during an unprecedented assault on Grand County. It examines integration and command structure within the different agencies participating, highlighting the roles of various first responder disciplines when preparing for and responding to disasters.
Using a whole-community approach, the course provides an opportunity for agencies to examine their overall preparedness capability. This goal is accomplished through interactive discussions between the groups, collaborative planning, as well as participation in a day-long field training scenario, which presents participants with an incident that significantly challenges their existing resources.
County Road 61 will be closed during this training from County Road 611 to Second Street and Diamond Avenue in Granby. Residents are encouraged to enter and exit the area using Fourth Street.
Although this is the first time Louisiana State University has conducted the Integrated Response Exercise in Grand County, it isn’t the first time area responders have done exercises to prepare for whatever disaster the future might bring. Residents with any questions about the exercise are encouraged to call the Granby Police Department at 970-887-3007.
Editor’s note: The title of this story has been changed from the original story.
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