Airport drill for plane crash

Left, a medic checks an injured man for back and neck injuries. Right, nurses confer over how to tend to a man with facial burns. Photos: Isaac Marty.
Left, a medic checks an injured man for back and neck injuries. Right, nurses confer over how to tend to a man with facial burns. Photos: Isaac Marty.


ISAAC MARTY

Fire fighters, policemen, nurses, doctors, and other first responders rushed to Amata Kabua International Airport for a plane crash response drill Tuesday night. This was the biannual Full-Scale Emergency Exercise (FSE) required by RMI Directorate of Civil Aviation and US Federal Aviation Administration, said RMI Ports Authority Airport Manager Thomas Maddison.

The scenario was a Boeing 737 crash landing with 115 passengers — who were played by volunteers from Salvation Army and the local community — on board. In the emergency training exercise, the plane split into three sections. Passengers spread out with different severity of injuries.

The airport tower raised the alarm, which triggered the response from Marshall Islands Police Department (MIPD), MIPD Fire and Rescue, Majuro Atoll Local Government Police, Ministry of Health, Marshall Islands Red Cross Society, and other first responders in town. Ports Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting put out fires and started attending to “casualties” while other responders arrived at the scene to join the response.

Passengers in good condition or with minor problems were moved a safe distance from the crash site. Those with broken legs and arms were tagged yellow. Broken neck, severe bleeding, head injury, and other major health problems were tagged red. Hospital ambulance, police trucks, and approved vehicles loaded patients and rushed them to the hospital where doctors, nurses, and staff were at the ready. It was realistic.

 

Read more about this in the August 25, 2017 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.