Airport disaster drill deemed successful

Every three years airports all over the country have to test themselves to find out how they respond to accidents and other serious situations.  Accidents happen, but when those accidents happen in the air, the challenges magnify both for a planes crew and the folks on the ground.

That's why Salisbury Airport took steps Saturday morning to plan for those accidents.

"It's important so that we know if we have any deficiencies in our action plans, or if we find better ways to do things, by doing the drills, it's always better to find out on a planned exercise than when an emergency actually occurs," says airport manager, Dawn Veatch.

"To help us learn, to help us make this airport what we want it to make it, and it's gone very well," says Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver.

Airport officials ruled the exercise a success.

"At this time there isn't anything that we found that was unusual.  All of our response teams arrived on time, if not before their normal times that we would've expected," says Veatch.

First responders from Parsonsburg, Delmar, Allen and other agencies all participated.  The Federal Aviation Administration mandated event acts as a way to standardize communication between the airport and coordinating departments.

"Those information drills are very important to us to be sure it's standardized so that we communicate properly," says Veatch.  "It's been a wonderful lesson in how we can come together to make this airport special."

This also tests PRMC and their ability to take on trauma victims from any serious situations on the runways.

"We also have the hospital actually participating, not just as an on-call, they're actually taking 15 passengers to the hospital and they'll exercise their emergency procedures there to be sure they can handle the volume of trauma that we sent them."

Aside from this, the airport runs four mini tests a year.

Categories: Local News, Maryland