Abandoned apartments help first responders practice preparedness

Abandoned apartments help first responders practice preparedness

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Transforming an abandoned apartment complex into a region-wide training exercise is how first responders spent much of Friday morning, as they completed an emergency preparedness drill.

The abandoned apartment complex lies off of Cusseta Road and was swarming with men and women ready to handle a fake emergency situation.

From traditional walkie-talkies to cutting edge technology like drones, first responders in the Valley pulled resources together to prepare for the worst.

Amongst those practicing to handle a hurricane at Friday's simulation included teams from Fort Benning.

"Well the beautiful thing is that they're military and they bring a military perspective to it, so it helps us to better organize. The military is a great organization with command and control so we learned a lot from them," said Riley Land, Columbus' emergency manager.

In the case of a hurricane, or extremely high winds and flooding, officials want to keep their search and rescue skills sharp, which make practices important.

"Unknown of having victims come in, and how would you respond to that? How does that effect the damage assessment? Priority one is obviously is life safety," said Land.

While the drill presented challenges, a morning of hard work could mean the difference between life and death for people in the Valley should disaster strike.

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