The TCEMA will join with local law enforcement, fire departments, municipalities and other supporting agencies to participate in a full-scale Department of Transportation Hazardous Material Emergency Preparedness Exercise starting at 7:30 a.m.
The exercise will not affect the public in any way and is only a training drill, the TCEMA announced.
The purpose of the exercise is to evaluate local Hazmat skills during an actual event, according to TCEMA Emergency Management specialist LeighAnn Butler.
“While we are more than confident that all Talladega County responders are trained and capable of performing any task put before them during a real-world event, it is always a great opportunity to practice,” she said.
Butler said the drill “gives all agencies involved an opportunity to exercise their roles, capabilities and communication between multiple jurisdictions. It also gives each agency an opportunity to identify and correct any shortfalls and prepare for real events.”
The preparedness exercise will simulate multiple hazardous materials releases, which require implementation of local response plans. Simulations include an 18-wheeler/car accident on Alabama 21 in Winterboro and an accident at the OMYA plant in Sylacauga.
“The exercise is designed to establish a learning environment for players to practice emergency response plans, policies and procedures as they pertain to severe weather, hazardous material, transportation and tactical interoperable communications,” Butler said.
If any real world situations arise during the exercise, it will be terminated immediately.
The participating agencies are OMYA, Alabama Department of Public Health, Alabama Department of Transportation, Childersburg Fire Department, Citizens Baptist Medical Center, Coosa Valley Medical Center, Radio Amateur Communications Emergency Services, Red Cross, Sylacauga Fire Department, Sylacauga Police Department, Talladega County Department of Human Resources, Talladega County Road Department, Talladega Fire Department, Talladega Police Department, Talladega County Sheriff’s Department, Winterboro Volunteer Fire Department, Lay Lake Volunteer Fire Department and volunteers from across Talladega County.
The exercise is paid for through the Hazard Materials Emergency Preparedness Grant Program and overseen by Lee Helms Associates.
The TCEMA is responsible for coordinating the emergency management activities of county and city governments as it relates to the safety of the citizens of the county. It will implement its capabilities and mutual aid agreements throughout the county among the different municipalities and their responding agencies during the exercise.
The agency conducts a full-scale exercise annually with numerous tabletop exercises throughout the year.
Contact Emily Adams at firstname.lastname@example.org.