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Wise County Drill to Test Emergency Responders

Release Date: 06/18/2008
Contact Information: Roy Seneca (215) 814-5567 seneca.roy@epa.gov

PHILADELPHIA (June 18, 2008) -- The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Wise County (Va.) Emergency Operations are teaming up to sponsor a two-day emergency response drill in the county June 21-22.

The exercise, which will focus on responding to a potential terrorist attack, will examine how local, state and federal emergency response agencies respond to manage a multi-scenario emergency.

Wise County emergency responders have volunteered to participate in the exercise, including personnel from the Wise County HAZMAT Unit and Wise County Sherriff’s Response Team. Other agencies participating include: Virginia Department of Emergency Management; Virginia Department of Health; Virginia State Police, Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Bomb Squad Technicians, and Counter-Terrorism and Criminal Interdiction; EPA Criminal Investigations Division; EPA Hazardous Site Cleanup Division; and the FBI.

Drills such as this, which is expected to include 50 to 100 participants, are valuable training tools for first response personnel and will help to develop, sustain and provide feedback on the proficiency in the tasks that make up critical emergency response operations. This is the first operational-based exercise co-sponsored by EPA and Wise County.

For more information on EPA's involvement with emergency management, visit: http://www.epa.gov/emergencies/index.htm .