Jul 26, 2014

Palos Park Disaster Drill Will Test and Train Emergency Responders

The training will be entirely virtual—no activity will take place in public, police said.

Palos Park Disaster Drill Will Test and Train Emergency Responders

Palos Park Police May 7 will test their preparedness and response of local and regional agencies should a real crisis occur.  

The event staged by Palos Park Emergency Management Preparedness Coordinator Frank Flores will focus on response plans for an actual disaster which would trigger a sudden influx of police, media, and concerned community members.

The scenario will involve a simulated disaster with a full response drill examining Palos Park’s readiness pre-event, during an event, post-event and the mitigation, recovery process for training purposes.  

The drill will use a virtual Cook County DHS EOC (Emergency Operations Center) run from the Kaptur Administrative Center at 8999 W. 123rd. St., with components covering the Metra station, water pumping station, Hackney’s, Southwest Central Dispatch Center (SWCD) as well as several major roadways. Emergency personnel will not be on-scene at any of the locations. 

"Virtually Palos Park will be having a very trying day, but there will be no impact on the public or traffic," Chief Joe Miller told Patch. "Our public presence will be very lowkey."

"The goal of this exercise is to enhance working relationships and collaboration between all involved," said Police Commissioner Dan Polk. "It’s a mock exercise, but it’s also a very real test of our ability to respond to an actual disaster."

Throughout the day police teams, SWAT, bomb squads, and other emergency personnel will train on real scenarios that have occurred in the Chicago Metro area. 

The goal is to improve communications during a disaster or mass-casualty incident, how to train better in the future, what equipment may be needed and a peer review of how well Palos Park Police can handle responding to multiple incidents at once.

Palos Park Police officers will review the importance using training to put themselves in these of situations. 

"The goal of these exercises, is to practice working with other agencies, look at lessons learned and be prepared for the worst, be it man-made or a natural disaster," police said. 

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