MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. --
Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point conducted a
large-scale exercise that simulated responses to multiple emergency scenarios here,
The Mass Casualty Exercise was held primarily to
test first responders, operational personnel and security procedures in preparation for the upcoming 2016 Cherry
Point Air Show. Similar exercises are required annually ensure protocol and safety
standards are met. On years the biannual air show occurs, the training revolves
around specific scenarios relative to an air show.
“Prior to an air show, we conduct several exercises
to test the response to various kinds of potential emergencies,” said Mike
Barton, the public affairs director for the air station. “The point is to
identify any issues that need to be corrected before the actual event.”
Our personnel conduct these exercises to enhance our
preparedness and give the public the best possible show and keep them safe at
the same time, explained Barton.
Role players were used to create more realistic
scenarios found in a typical air show setting.
“We have good resources and preventative measures,”
said Grant DeHaven, the mission assurance program manager for Cherry Point. “In
the very low likelihood something like that would occur, we have to validate
emergency response actions.”
“With every airshow comes improvements and during
the exercise, everyone remained calm, kept everything smooth and maintained
communication throughout the duration,” said DeHaven.
“Overall, the exercise went very well,” explained
Barton. “Cherry Point has hosted the air show for many years and we have many
professionals who have worked these problems before and have built upon the
lessons learned from the previous exercises to incorporate them into standard