Simulated casualties at MOD training event

Wiltshire's Local Resilience Forum is today working together to test its response in a major incident exercise with the Ministry of Defence at MoD Corsham.

Agencies are working in conjunction with staff at the recently refurbished MOD site in Corsham in order to test its plans in the event of a major or catastrophic incident.

The exercise, code named Operation Rush, has some ‘live’ play involving a simulated road traffic collision and will be played in ‘real’ time.

The exercise will involve simulated fatalities and casualties in the wreckage of a 7.5 tonne military truck and minibus.

The organisation Amputees in Action is taking part to add realism to the scenario, and to assist medics in assessing how to deal with casualties who may have been seriously injured.

Wiltshire Police, Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service, Wiltshire Council, South Western Ambulance Service, NHS England Area Team, Public Health England and the Environment Agency are the key local partners involved in Operation Rush.

The exercise will focus on response and rescue in the morning with ‘live’ play and the afternoon is a tabletop scenario bringing tactical commanders together to examine their response with wider consideration around recovery.

Participants will be required to decide what needs to be done to bring the site back to full functionality and the local community back to normal. Wiltshire Council is also using the exercise to test its Rest Centre plans.

Emergency planners, who form part of the Local Resilience Forum (LRF), have been working together with colleagues from the MOD for over six months pulling the exercise together.

A major incident is where one agency or more would be severely impacted (ie: hospitals or Ambulance Service) or where there is mass fatalities, casualties or disruption to normal services.

Bob Young, Major Incident Planning Manager for Wiltshire Police said: “Wiltshire has a number of MOD establishments across the county.

"Today is a good opportunity for partner agencies to test their response to an incident and work with colleagues from the MOD to ensure that we understand what is required and the capabilities of each organisation. It is always good for us to exercise our plans and learn lessons for the future.”

Mike Veale, Deputy Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police and Chair of the Local Resilience Forum said: “Exercise Rush is another chance to test and exercise our plans and we look forward to working with the MOD .

"Thankfully, major incidents are relatively rare in Wiltshire and Swindon. However, the Local Resilience Forum regularly works together for incidents such as flooding, adverse weather or any incident where more than one agency is involved, and October’s Storm St. Jude is a good practical example of this.”

Nigel Spreadbury-Clews Head of Establishment for MoD Corsham said: “It's been one of my main objectives since opening the fully refurbished MoD Corsham site to run a full scale emergency exercise involving all of the external emergency agencies and this exercise will be the culmination of months of planning and hard work by my team and its results will help us shape future contingency plans”

The Local Resilience Forum is the principal form of multi-agency cooperation for resilience in a local area. Further information about the Wiltshire & Swindon Local Resilience Forum (LRF) can be found at www.wiltshireandswindonprepared.org.uk

Further information about Amputees in Action can be found at www.amputeesinaction.co.uk

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