A large ammonia spill shut down part of the Worthington-Kellogg Plant this morning–except it wasn’t a real spill.
Today the Emergency Management Agency hosted a full-scale hazmat exercise, testing the abilities of emergency response units in Muskingum County.
“We’ve been planning this for a year, 10-12 meetings,” said director of the exercise Jeff Jadwin. “We decide what chemical is going to be used to test for that time, what areas of the state requirements we’re going to test. We’re testing 9 areas today out of the 13 we could test.”
Jadwin says there are many things happening at once in an exercise like this, but if it were real, they would have one main focus.
“The biggest worry for us is getting all the victims out and decontaminated as quickly as possible,” he said. “Hazmat we don’t run and rush in. It’s not like fighting a fire where you run in. With hazmat, you set up you take your time and do everything methodically so that you don’t get anyone else hurt.”
Jadwin says he is confident in the abilities of the local departments. He says local it wasn’t just fire and police who are involved in an exercise like this. The Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office, Emergency Management Agency and Red Cross are also involved.