Maryland National Guard trains with local first responders in Ocean City

OCEAN CITY, Md. – The Maryland National Guard and thousands of local first responders in Ocean City trained side by side on Saturday for different types of domestic emergencies.

“In Ocean City, we have the pleasure of welcoming 8 million people here annually,” said the Spokesperson for Ocean City, Jessica Waters.

“It’s incredible, but it’s also a big responsibility, and this kind of training opportunity doesn’t happen very often so we’re taking advantage of the opportunity,” said Waters.

According to Maryland National Guard Colonel Charles Kohler, first responders practiced what to do during an active shooting and even after explosions from biological weapons.

“We have folks that are going through decontamination like a dirty bomb has gone off and the folks have to be cleaned and decontaminated,” said Kohler.

“The tents, you’ll see that they’re mostly used for decontamination, and they have a hosing down equipment, they have litters in there so they can move patients,” said Kohler.

Kohler stressed that it is important for first responders and the Maryland National Guard to prepare for an emergency now rather than later.

“During an emergency situation, that’s not the first time we want to be exchanging cards,” said Kohler.

“You want to make sure you know everybody, know what they’re capable of doing and you know what we can bring to the table as well,” he said.

“We certainly hope for the best, but it’s our job to prepare for the worst,” said Waters.

According to Kohler, the Illinois Army National Guard and the South Carolina Army National Guard also participated in these training exercises.