Tech Holds Disaster Drill
Law enforcement, firefighters, emergency medical personnel, news media and dozens of volunteers worked with Michigan Tech officials to conduct a disaster drill on campus yesterday.
Despite the large scope of the drill and the complicated scenario, the drill was a success according to Tech’s Director of Public Safety and Police Services Dan Bennett.
"Overall I thought things went quite well. I was particularly pleased with the coordination between Michigan Tech, law enforcement, fire, emergency services, and all other local agencies that were involved in this effort."
Yesterday’s drill scenario involved a stabbing in Douglass Houghton Hall, and shootings with multiple victims in the M&M Building as well as a possible explosion.
Emergency vehicles converged on the campus shortly after 2 p.m. The time had not been revealed in advance to emergency personnel or the media, so they could respond as if it had been an actual emergency.
Local media did not only cover the event as news, but participated in the drill as well. As would have been the case in an actual emergency, a command center was established and a media center was set up, both off of campus. A call center was set up to handle phone calls from concerned families and friends.
More than 50 “victims”—volunteers who were identified as having a variety of injuries—were treated on the scene and transported by ambulance to UP Health System-Portage and Aspirus Keweenaw, who also participated in the drill.
Following the drill, members of Tech's Incident Command Team evaluated the event to identify areas in which improvements can be made.
Vice President for Student Affairs and Advancement Les Cook, Emergency Operations Center Manager, applauded the cooperative effort of all involved.
"I'm proud of the support of the campus community and others that were involved," Cook said.
"While we hope a situation like this never occurs, it feels good to be prepared."