Md. First Responders Prepare For Real Disasters With Major Simulation

BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — First responders from several counties and volunteers use plenty of imagination, preparing for a real mass-casualty incident.

Gigi Barnett shows us the major simulation.

A casualty is created, and actors get in place. Rescue workers are called in. It’s a staged emergency that first responders in Upperco designed to train volunteers and treat victims when the real thing happens.

“A hay ride that was going on. An ATV didn’t see the tractor and the hay wagon and cut them off. The hay wagon and the tractor rolled down the hill, and we have about 16 or 17 injured victims as a result,” said EMS Sergeant Matthew Burgan.

Everything is recorded. It’s information that could cut down emergency response times in actual life or death accidents.

“It gets us into the equipment. It gets us familiar with it. Mass casualties are not something, thank goodness, that happen often so it’s one of those skills we want to practice to make sure that when it does happen we are at the top of our game,” said Burgan.

Emergency workers say they wanted a simulation that would be realistic for rural Baltimore County. An ATV-hayride collision was the choice.

Taylor Coffey and Caitlyn Ruben volunteered to be victims. They say helping emergency workers to train gives them peace of mind.

“What if something were to happen? What would happen with us?” they said.

Volunteer fire departments from Baltimore, Carroll and Howard counties participated in the simulation.

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