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Nassau's LPIA airport emergency response put to the test in full-scale drill
By Shonalee King Johnson
Nov 2, 2012 - 2:29:25 PM

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NASSAU, BAHAMAS -  On Tuesday November 6, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. stakeholders at Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) will participate in a full-scale emergency exercise. International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) regulations require all airports to establish an emergency plan commensurate with the aircraft operations and other activities conducted at the airport. It is further required that this plan be tested by conducting a full-scale emergency exercise every two years.

This year, approximately 200 persons will simulate an aircraft crash scene, playing the roles of passengers, airline crew, emergency response agencies, airport employees and family members of crash victims. Participants include the Royal Bahamas Police Force, Royal Bahamas Defense Force, Civil Aviation Department, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Airport Authority, MED Evac, JetBlue, Bahamas Red Cross Society, Princess Margaret Hospital, Doctors Hospital, New Providence Community Church and Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD).

Nassau Airport Development Company’s Public Safety team is coordinating the exercise. Frank Walker, Director of Airside Operations & Public Safety says the full-scale drill is a way to test the soundness of the emergency plan including the response of all agencies involved, and the quality and effectiveness of the emergency equipment and communications at LPIA. “Our success in a real emergency depends on how agencies work together and execute specific tasks. This is the third exercise since NAD’s existence and after every drill we are able to learn what works and identify areas for improvement.”

Tuesday’s exercise will last approximately 4 hours and is not expected to impact air travel at LPIA. Travelers are urged to continue with their scheduled travel plans. NAD is advising members of the public not to be alarmed by the emergency response vehicles in the vicinity of the airport during the drill.

All media representatives documenting the exercise are asked to park in the short term parking lot at 8:15 a.m. and report to NAD’s executive offices in terminal two (Royal Bank of Canada entrance) to receive press credentials. NAD personnel will escort media representatives to the incident site.

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