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MAINE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
Upcoming Aroostook County Exercise Announced
July 16, 2010
Exercise to Test Agency Coordination
Madawaska, MAINE – On Saturday, July 24, residents and visitors in Madawaska may see more fire trucks, police cruisers and ambulances than usual. A major exercise will be held at Twin Rivers Paper mill in Town.
“We will be using a terrorism scenario,” says Vern Ouellette, Aroostook County Emergency Management Director. “However, these agencies would also be working together in a mass casualty or major emergency of any kind, here or in another part of the state. We will be thoroughly testing our ability to work together smoothly.”
Residents and visitors may notice emergency vehicle activity and notices of “exercise in progress” at or near the mill.
“All of the agencies responding have good plans and extensive training, and this scenario will put all that to the test. We expect all response units to do well, but also that we will find things to improve upon. That’s why we exercise, to test our plans and training in the field, and get better at what we do.”
This year’s exercise will be held at the Twin Rivers Paper Mill. Twin Rivers wanted to be a part of this event to first exercise their plans and secondly show that they are proactive in preparing for the safety of their workers.
The exercise will involve local responders, hospitals, local, county and state law enforcement, regional hazardous materials response teams, and the Twin Rivers Mill. It will test communications systems and operating protocols that are used statewide, and will provide valuable information on best practices to be shared, and improvements that could be implemented in other parts of the State.
The purpose of these exercises is to test the plans and training that have been put in place for such an event. This particular exercise will test not just the responders on the scene, but also Northern Maine Medical Center’s ability to handle multiple patients and decontamination capabilities.
Exercise coordination is provided by the Aroostook County Emergency Management and the Maine Emergency Management Agency.
Funding and support is provided through the Maine Emergency Management Agency Exercise Program and the Department of Homeland Security.
Contact:Vern Ouellette, County EMA Director
Last update: 07/20/10
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