Georgia simulates anthrax attack

State and local agencies in Columbia County, Georgia, conducted emergency medical exercises simulating an anthrax attack on January 22 at a local high school.

"We have evaluators, we have observers and we may just have citizens that want to come through and participate," Incident Commander Linda Graves said, according to

Over 300 volunteers participated in the drill at Grovetown High School, which simulated an outbreak of anthrax. The goal of the event was to train the public health staff in the event of a real life scenario, according to

"It is extremely important because if we have a biological attack on our area or if we have a pandemic, we need to protect our citizens in our county by medicating them. We can do that by vaccinating them if there's a pandemic,” Graves said, reports.

Participants in the event had to drive through stations while the medical staff distributed medication. The organizers told that drive-through systems are more efficient and more effective. When people stand in line, they potentially expose one another to harmful substances.

"We just need to make sure that the community knows that this is a drill and the purpose of it is to make sure public health is prepared to distribute large quantities of medication in the event of an emergency,” Graves told

Organizers said that this is the first drill of its kind undertaken in Columbia County.