Successful emergency response drill conducted at South Georgia Tech
Over 150 individuals participated in a multi-layered emergency response training drill on the South Georgia Technical College campus recently that involved more than 20 different emergency response agencies as well as students from South Georgia Technical College and Georgia Southwestern State University.
“On behalf of South Georgia Technical College and the entire community, I would like to thank each of the individuals and agencies that took part in the Emergency Management Training Drill on the South Georgia Technical College campus,” said SGTC President Dr. John Watford. “The dedication and training of the public servants who work diligently to help secure the health and safety of our students as well as all of the citizens of this and surrounding communities is vital. We appreciate you and what you do.”
Dr. Watford stressed that the drill was held to help prepare for an event that no one hopes will ever happen. “We are very fortunate to have these type of partnerships with each of the individuals and agencies that participated in this drill,” continued Dr. Watford. “To have 150 or more individuals to dedicate the time and energy and resources needed to work together to pull off this type of training is tremendous. We offer programs that train Law Enforcement, Fire Fighters, Emergency Management Technicians, Licensed Practical Nursing, and more. This drill showcased each area of study into one great training exercise and demonstrated why these services are so important to our communities.”
The simulated event provided realistic training and hands-on experience for South Georgia Technical College EMT and licensed practical nursing students as well as Georgia Southwestern State University nursing students, the SGTC campus safety officers, all local law enforcement agencies, firefighters, and first response organizations including the Sumter County Emergency Management office and Phoebe Sumter Hospital.
The mock victims played by SGTC and GSW students were triaged by SGTC Emergency Management Technician students and agency professionals from the Sumter County and Americus Fire Departments, Gold Star, Lee County EMS, Webster County EMS, Crisp County EMS, Schley County EMS, Terrell County EMS, and Dougherty County EMS groups. Victims were transported by ambulances and a helicopter to GSW’s nursing building (the upstairs replicates a hospital floor and can serve as a trauma center) and Phoebe Sumter Hospital emergency room. At Georgia Southwestern State University, eight GSW registered nursing students and eight SGTC licensed practical nursing students worked side by side to offer care to the mock victims.
The idea for the multi-unit drill originally came from Brad Harnum, SGTC EMT Instructor. “I really wanted the advanced level EMT students who are graduating in August to experience a realistic emergency and be able to think outside of the box before entering the workforce,” Harnum said.
Nigel Poole, Sumter County Emergency Management Director, help coordinate the drill and agency participants. “This drill is a huge collaborative effort. Each agency and organization involved, as well as the citizens from all participating nearby counties, will benefit from this training in the event of a real-life emergency situation,” explained Poole.
At the end of the drill, each agency gathered to recap the event and evaluations were conducted. “I think we can all say that this was a very successful drill,” said Poole who headed up the evaluation portion. “Are there things that we can do differently or better? The answer is yes, but we also know that training is what allows us to see and correct or adopt new ways of communicating and working together for the good of our community.”
This is the second drill that South Georgia Technical College has hosted this year. For photos of the event visit the SGTC website at: https://www.southgatech.edu/photo/sgtc-emergency-response-training-drill/