Saturday, 13 December 2014

Georgia National Guard trains for disaster situations

The Georgia National Guard Homeland Response Force is making sure their volunteers know what to do in the event of a disaster.

"It gives them the opportunity to go, within range, and exercise their skills and what they're required to do in case a disaster happens in the United States," says Lt. Col. Michael Maddox.

The guardsmen will practice multiple scenarios at a training center in Perry. One of them is a search and rescue simulation. They must also pass a test in order for them to get their certifications.

"It doesn't just have to be a terrorist incident. It can also be a hurricane, a tornado, or anything that involves mass casualties," explains Sgt. Tyler Stanton.

During one exercise, trainees pretended a building had collapsed and searched for survivors. Once they found them, they cleaned the victims to rid their bodies of contaminants before sending them to the medical area for treatment.

Volunteers with the Homeland Response Force acted as victims during the simulations. They say training with real people better prepares them because they never know what they will really expect in a real-life situation.

"You don't know what exactly what you're going to expect when you get out into the field and you're out actually doing this type of stuff in real world. So, it's good to keep the soldiers on their toes," adds Stanton.

Guardsmen are tested about every two years to make sure they are up to date on training.

The guardsmen will begin their testing Saturday. They must pass and be certified in every element.

Saturday 13 December 2014


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