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Nassau Airport To Run Aircraft Emergency Drill

NASSAU, The Bahamas — On September 21, 2010, at 6:00 p.m., the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD) will conduct a full-scale simulated aircraft crash at the Lynden Pindling International Airport.

NAD officials will partner with the relevant stakeholders including the Royal Bahamas Police Force, Royal Bahamas Defence Force, Civil Aviation Department, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Airport Authority, MED Evac, Bahamasair, Bahamas Red Cross Society and Doctors Hospital for the drill.

The exercise will include volunteers serving as “passengers” at the crash scene. Fire trucks, ambulances, police cars and other vehicles will be a part of the actual drill. We are advising members of the public not to be alarmed by the emergency vehicles in the vicinity of the airport.

NAD’s Director of Operations Deborah Coleby said the drill is a part of the airport’s preparedness strategy. “This is a focused activity that allows us to test the airport’s emergency response plan in real time. We are partnering with all of the relevant agencies at LPIA to determine the effectiveness of our emergency response procedures, similarly, they will have the opportunity to test their plans as well.

“Our goal is to put our resources to the test,  learn and improve upon any  shortcomings that we might have ensuring that in the event of a real emergency, we are fully prepared to respond,” Coleby added.

NAD conducted a similar full-scale emergency exercise in September 2008.  This year’s event dubbed “Operation Sunset” is scheduled during the evening to test response times after dark.

“International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) regulations dictate that all airports have an emergency plan and that the plan is put to the test every two years,” said Frank Walker, NAD’s Public Safety Manager. “We plan on taking some of the lessons learned during the drill and applying it to our response in the event of an actual disaster.”

The exercise will last approximately 3.5 hours and is not expected to delay air travel at LPIA. Travellers are urged to continue with their scheduled travel plans.

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

Bahamas Information Services

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