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Nevada Air National Guard participates in Broken Wing Exercise 2014

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Paula Macomber
  • 152nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs
On Thursday, May 29, 2014, The Nevada Air National Guard participated in the Reno-Tahoe International Airport's Triennial Emergency Response Training Exercise. The exercise took place on a field just south of the Airport's runway from 8:00 a.m. until noon.

The Nevada Air National Guard Inspector General Inspection team took this opportunity to exercise the base's response to this type of incident. A Crisis Action Team (CAT) and an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) was stood up. The Wing Commander was notified of the accident as if it were a real incident. Realistic emergency inputs were simulated, testing the capability of the Nevada Air National Guard's response to this type of disaster.

The Superintendent of the Inspector General Inspection team, Chief Master Sgt. Linda Simons, said, "Absolutely commendable reactions by our members in response to the exercise, everyone jumped into their roles and executed their piece of the mission effectively. It was also great to see the coordination between our unit and the civilian agencies like the Airport Authority and the emergency responders."

Four of the Nevada Air National Guard's 152nd Intelligence Squadron members along with two members of the 152nd Logistics Readiness Squadron took leave and volunteered to participate as victims in the crash.

Master Sgt. Mike Moyer of the 152nd Intelligence Squadron said, "I chose to participate because it provides valuable training and experience to the emergency responders in the Reno area. It allows them to practice their triage skills."

The Nevada Air National Guard's Dining Facility was the location for the moulage team to apply make-up to twenty five of the 80 acting victims of the simulated plane crash. The moulage team, Image Perspectives, out of Carson City, arrived at 5:00 a.m. taking one person at a time with 'status cards' from each victim detailing their injuries in very realistic looking make-up to show their injuries. They finished around 7:45 a.m. The victims were then transported to the scene where they role-played their injuries to emergency response personnel.

Inputs came into the Nevada Air National Guard EOC that a 737 aircraft had crash landed short of the runway, south of the airport, and, in the process, damaged one of the Nevada ANG's C-130 aircraft. The inspection team presented various scenarios to the EOC and CAT to respond to.

All in all, the training provided vital experience to the Reno-Tahoe International Airport, local emergency responders and the Nevada Air National Guard. Many lessons were learned for dealing with future incidents and accidents. Communication seemed to be a key issue.

In reflection of the day's training, Col. Jeffrey Burkett, 152nd Airlift Wing Commander said, "Exercising the Airlift Wings ability to support a catastrophic scenario in our community demonstrates the value of the National Guard and what we bring to the table for Nevada."

In June, the base will be testing other emergency capabilities during their Vigilant Blue Week from June 19 through June 27.