121st members participate in mass fatality exercise

FAIRBORN, Ohio -- Members of the 121st Air Refueling Wing Force Support Squadron and 121st Medical Group participated in the 2014 Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management Mass Fatality Full-Scale Exercise at the National Center for Medical Readiness, Fairborn, Ohio, Apr. 17, 2014. The 2014 MCOEM FSE was a one day exercise that focused on key local and county emergency responders, coroner response operations and the integration of state and federal agencies that are necessary following a terrorist incident. The primary objective of the exercise was not only to evaluate Montgomery County's emergency operations plans (EOPs), Mass Fatality Plan and operating procedures, but also to create a learning environment for the participants to exercise their protocols in the event of such an incident. Players in the exercise consisted of personnel who would have an active role in responding to this type of incident. These personnel included: local agencies, including several county coroners' offices, emergency management agencies and communications offices; state agencies, such as the National Center for Medical Readiness, the Ohio Funeral Directors Association, the Ohio Search Dog Team, the Ohio Emergency Management Association and the Ohio Air and Army National Guard; and federal agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigations. 121st members made up the CBRNE Enhanced Response Force Packages Team (CERF-P) and the Fatality Search and Recovery (FSR) Team, and one member was assigned to the Homeland Response Force (HRF). The CERF-P team, whose primary mission is to accompany the Search and Extraction (S&E) team and provide medical support, consisted of members of both the 121st Air Refueling Wing Medical Group and 180th Fighter Wing Medical Group. On the scene, there were 10 S&E Medics, three Medical Logistics personnel and one Medical Planning Officer. Twelve members of the 121 FSS group made up the FSR team, whose mission was to assist the coroners and medical examiners in collecting human remains from the scene of the simulated incident. As this was the first time the FSR team participated in this type of exercise, they were assisted by two members of the 162nd Fighter Wing, Tucson, Ariz. The 162 FW currently has a team established and came to offer their guidance and best practices to the 121st Airmen. Master Sgt. Jeff Jones, 121st Mission Support Group First Sergeant, said that working with their Army counterparts, their trainers from the Arizona National Guard, and the other local, state and federal agencies, helped his team gain a better perspective of the mission and get some hands-on practice with their new equipment. There are several other training exercises planned over the next year leading up to the Exercise Evaluation (EXEVAL). The EXEVAL is an evaluation which certifies our teams to work in a chemical/non-chemical environmental disaster. "We learned what worked well, what did not and gained valuable experience to get us ready for our EXEVAL next year. We have several other training dates scheduled this year and will be working with our Army and civilian counterparts to gain more experience as we go from good to great in this new FSRT mission," said Jones.