Emergency exercise to be held at Collins Career Center

Published 10:22 am Thursday, June 25, 2009

GETAWAY — On Saturday June 27, an important test will be conducted at the Collins Career Center. Public safety and emergency services responders from several Lawrence County jurisdictions and other Tri-State agencies will converge on the school for a multi-agency training exercise.

The exercise will test school emergency plans for Collins Career Center and Rock Hill High School. According to Jeff Lawless, Lawrence County Sheriff, exercises are an important part of emergency planning and preparedness for schools and emergency responders.

“School systems have to create emergency or crisis plans, and emergency responders need to be a part of that preparedness and response process,” Lawless said. “We can practice response procedures and coordinate resources in an exercise setting to build those relationships and skills that would be needed in a real crisis” he said.

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Exercise activities will begin early Saturday morning and should end by late afternoon. “We will start setting up the exercise area at about 7 a.m., and we expect to be finished by 4 p.m,” Lawless said.

“The training may involve up to 200 people including school personnel from several county schools, emergency responders, planners, evaluators, controllers, observers and support staff”.

The sheriff urges the traveling public to drive cautiously when passing through the Getaway area. “The exercise will involve law enforcement units, EMS squads, fire trucks and other vehicles that will be

driving to and from the school entrance on Ohio Route 243. That section of highway will be a little busier than usual, and we want to make motorists aware of the increased traffic” he said. “We want to encourage anyone traveling through the area to drive cautiously and watch for emergency vehicles entering and leaving the highway.” he added.

Collins Career Center is located near Getaway at the intersection of Ohio Route 243 and Ohio Route 378, approximately eleven and a half miles east of Coal Grove on Ohio Route 243.