By Frank Lewis
Travelers along U.S. 52 East in Scioto County on Saturday morning may see an unusual number of emergency vehicles near the Haverhill Chemical Plant. First responders will be participating in a planned exercise to better prepare for emergency situations involving chemical plant releases and fires. The drill is held each year in Scioto County to practice response to emergency incidents. This year the drill is being held at Haverhill Chemical.
“The plant will simulate a fire involving acetone and phenol and Fire and EMS units will respond as if it were an actual event and activate their plans for fire suppression, victim extrication, decontamination and population and first responder protection actions.” Scioto County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Kim Carver said.
Carver said the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) criteria for evaluating exercises will be used to measure local response plans and response actions.
“Each year we simulate an emergency event to help us modify plans and identify gaps in response capabilities to guide us in what needs revision and where more training or equipment is needed,” Carver said. “Every county in the state must do an exercise each year to engage response partners in being more prepared when the real event occurs.”
Carver said there will be no traffic restrictions and response equipment will be contained in the plant area. The drill will be held from 9 a.m. until 12 Noon. Agencies participating in this year’s drill include the Scioto County Emergency Planning Committee; Scioto County EMA; Scioto County Sheriff Department; Scioto County Health Department; Ohio State Patrol Post #73; Ohio EMA; Green Township Fire and EMS; Porter Township Fire and EMS; Southern Ohio Medical Center; Kings Daughters Medical Center; and Haverhill Chemical Facility. The Piketon Department of Energy Facility is providing evaluators for EMA for the event.
Frank Lewis can be reached at 740-353-3101, Ext. 252, or on Twitter @FrankLewispdt.