Drill to focus on local, state, federal teamwork

Local emergency workers will participate in a massive, three-day drill starting April 1.

The exercise will be conducted at the Colorado Law Enforcement Training Center on Whitewater Hill off 32 Road. It will be based on a simulated emergency off Interstate 70. No traffic will be affected and no areas will be off-limits because of the drill.

“We don’t want people to get confused about the simulated location,” according to spokeswoman Heather Benjamin of the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office. “There will be no traffic diverted because of it.”

Mesa County has been chosen as one of five locations in the country to be the host of an emergency drill that will be conducted under the leadership of the National Emergency Preparedness Association as part of their 2014 Capstone Exercise.

A major focus of the drill will include a crash on the interstate that involves a truck hauling nuclear cargo.

Local emergency groups will gain practice contacting authorities on the state and federal level.

The drill will include simulation of victims’ injuries.

Local hospitals, and volunteer aid agencies such at The Salvation Army and Red Cross will be participating in the drill, Benjamin said.

“There are a lot of benefits to the city and county,” said Andy Martsolf, emergency manager for Mesa County. “We don’t often get the opportunity to interact with the state and federal agencies.”


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