Baltimore area emergency responders participate in large-scale event simulation

Members of the Baltimore Regional Incident Management Team (IMT) recently joined more than 100 other emergency responders to participate in a weeklong training event at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston, Ala.

Approximately 20 members of the Baltimore Regional IMT participated in the event, which simulated a mass-casualty incident and challenged the participants to lead and manage the response.

"This was as realistic as you can make it," Andrew O'Neil, a member of the Baltimore County Police who participated in the event, said. "There is not much training that put us in full HAZMAT suits and uses the training that we learned, not only from the police academy, but from your whole week here. It brought everything together and allowed us to use the training and be realistic."

Members of the Maryland region's Medical Taskforce participated in the event and were placed in unfamiliar situations during the event. The participants were also able to communicate and establish relationships with other regional hospitals.

"A key objective is to develop your network prior to an actual event," Ericka Wylie, a participant from Northwest Hospital in Maryland, said. "Neighboring hospitals have filled gaps and the training challenged participants to provide forward-thinking goals while maintaining realistic expectations. Understanding mass-casualty response is a pulse point for our region and the regional IMT exercise was beneficial to test concepts and theories."