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District of Columbia 2016 Full Scale Exercise Tests First Responders’ Emergency Response Capabilities

Friday, May 13, 2016

MEDIA ADVISORY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, May 16, 2016
  
 
 

District of Columbia 2016 Full Scale Exercise 

Tests First Responders’ Emergency Response Capabilities

 
Washington, DC – District first responders will participate in a multi-location, full scale emergency preparedness exercise on Wednesday, May 18, 2016, from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. The exercise, which is unrelated to any recent events, was planned in collaboration with CSX, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, and the American Red Cross, over the course of several months. It will simulate a train collision with a vehicle that causes a train derailment and a hazardous chemical spill. As part of the exercise, the District will also be testing our ability to shelter the residents of a neighborhood that could be affected by the hazardous chemical spill. 
 
Exercise play will take place at multiple locations:
 
Incident site at Benning Rail Yard, entrance at 32nd and D Streets, SE 
Shelter operations at Fort Davis Community Center, 1400 41st Street, SE
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, 3800 Reservoir Road, NW
District Emergency Operations Center and Joint Information Center at the Unified Communications Center, 2720 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, SE
Health Emergency Coordination Center, 55 M Street, SE, Suite 300
Fatality Management Operations Center, 401 E Street, SW
 
Residents and businesses near the exercise locations will see an increased first responder (fire and police) presence and should not be alarmed by this during the exercise time. There will be no street closures associated with this event. 
 
This exercise is designed to test and evaluate District emergency operations, techniques, procedures, and command and control relationships among first responders and District partners and stakeholders as they relate to a derailment, hazardous materials spill, and sheltering operations. The goal of the exercise is to ensure that government agencies and our partners are prepared to protect the public in an event of a similar derailment or spill.
 
The following additional information should be noted:
 
Anacostia Park: Visitors to the Park should be aware that the exercise will be occurring nearby. While the impact on Anacostia Park itself will be minimal, there will be exercise staff on scene to direct park visitors away from the exercise play. Please follow any instructions from exercise staff and U.S. Park Police Officers. 
Fort Davis Community Center: The Center will be closed from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm to anyone not participating in the exercise. Parking will be restricted to emergency vehicles ONLY along both sides of 41st Street, SE between Alabama Avenue, SE and Fort Dupont Street, SE. 
 
Media are invited to observe the sheltering operations at the Fort Davis Community Center and the patient intake and decontamination at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. Media will NOT be allowed on the incident site at the Benning Rail Yard or the various operation centers. However, upon request, interviews, pictures and videos will be made available by the District’s Fire and Emergency Medical Services during the exercise.
 
The timelines for media are as follows:
Shelter operations at the Fort Davis Community Center – 10:45 am to 12:00 pm
Patient intake and decontamination at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital – 8:45 am – 10:30 am 
Incident site at Benning Rail Yard – Interviews, pictures and videos of the incident site exercise play will be made available throughout the exercise.
 
Press contacts who are interested in attending the press avail at the Fort Davis Community Center must register online at http://dc2016fseplayerregistration.eventbrite.com by Tuesday, May 17, 2016. For difficulties accessing the link and/or reasonable accommodations in support of registration, please contact Sarah Kessler at 703-518-9982 (TTY users please use Relay 711) or [email protected].
 
 
Press contacts who are interested in interviews with Fire and Emergency Medical Services personnel, photos or videos related to the incident site at Benning Rail Yard, must contact Doug Buchanan prior to the exercise at [email protected] or 202-673-3394 to schedule interview times and receive photos or video.