SOURCE: Los Angeles World Airports

June 11, 2008 11:57 ET

Van Nuys Airport Tests Emergency Response in Full-Scale Simulated Aircraft Accident

VAN NUYS, CA--(Marketwire - June 11, 2008) - Today, more than 300 people will participate in a full-scale, simulated aircraft accident that will test the capability of Van Nuys Airport's emergency management system. The Air Exercise (AirEx) will be staged today from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on the restricted airfield adjacent to the Los Angeles Fire Operations and General Services Buildings off of 16617 Arminita Street. The VNY Air Exercise will test emergency responders and mutual aid providers in a real-time, stress filled environment in which personnel, equipment and other resources are mobilized and deployed.

"With more than 300 participants -- including volunteers playing mock 'victims' -- this exercise will give individuals and agencies the opportunity to practice and refine their emergency procedures," said VNY Airport Manager, Selena Birk. More than 15 organizations will participate, including the Los Angeles Fire Department; Los Angeles Police Department; several Los Angeles World Airports divisions (LAX Airfield Operations, LAX Airport Police, Construction & Maintenance, Public and Community Relations, Risk Management and Emergency Preparedness); federal aviation and law enforcement agencies (Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board); American Red Cross; local hospital emergency rooms, medical units and ambulance services; and other mutual aid organizations.

The public has an expectation that emergency service providers will respond to major incidents in a professional and coordinated effort, providing for immediate care in any instances that will threaten and endanger their lives. VNY AirEx 2008 provides an opportunity for the LAFD and other agencies to refine their operations working under a unified command structure.

The objectives of the VNY AirEx 2008 include testing the efficiency of inter-agency and inter-departmental planning and coordination in managing an airport disaster; testing current procedures of the Airport Emergency Plan using responses under a unified command and satisfying federal requirements; and determining strengths and weaknesses in the integration of response resources with the goal toward improving individual agency and overall emergency response. Although VNY is not regulated under CFR, Part 139, VNY remains dedicated to emergency preparedness and will periodically conduct table top and full scale emergency exercises.

Today's VNY AirEx 2008 simulation involves an aircraft accident involving other vehicles and interruptions to airport operations and public access to streets adjacent to the airport. The on-airfield mock accident scene will include a static B-727-200 aircraft, a large "debris field" of aircraft parts, smoke to simulate explosion and fire, "mock victims" in make-up (moulage) appropriate to their assigned medical condition, fire and law enforcement responders, medical triage, ambulance and helicopter transport of "victims," hazard containment, etc.

Contact Information

    (818) 909-3529

    (818) 434-7633