By: Maureen Bastardi, Somerville Council on Aging
On Friday, October 2nd, the Massachusetts Port Authority, along with several mutual aid partners, conducted a massive emergency response drill (a mock plane crash) at Logan International Airport. The purpose of such drills is to test coordination, communication and response in the event of a real incident at Logan.
The drill, dubbed Operation Ready, involved a Boeing 787 accident, along with a fire scenario that included the evacuation of passengers from the plane. Massport reports there were 200 “crash” victims participating in the drill, sixteen of which were clients and staff from the Somerville Council on Aging.
The 16 older adults, some with special needs, along with several staff members started their day early and braved the 48-degree morning temperatures to partake in the emergency drill, which started at 7:00 A.M. and ran until 1:00 P.M.
Wearing their “Operation Ready” t-shirts and a tag outlining what injuries they had the 16 Somerville Council on Aging clients and staff were treated as if they had those injuries and were tended to by various mutual aid partners and actually transported to Boston area hospitals.
Some mutual aid partners of Massport included the Boston Fire Department, Massachusetts State Police, Boston EMS, private ambulance companies, area hospitals and many more. Overall, over 1,000 people participated in “Operation Ready.” Massport reported “it was a great exercise and each department learned from one another.”