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Red Cross Volunteers Participate in Disaster Drill

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Volunteers from the American Red Cross Chestnut Ridge Chapter participated in an emergency drill at the Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in Westmoreland County on Wednesday, May 17, 2017. The drill began with an airplane fuselage mockup being set afire and then extinguished.

The Red Cross mission during this event was sheltering and mass care for personnel in the airport who were waiting for incoming passengers and passengers preparing to depart on later flights. Our team worked very closely with members of Westmoreland County DCORT (Disaster Crisis Outreach and Referral Team), who provided behavioral health counseling and support.

Our approach was to separate the family members awaiting incoming passengers from those waiting to depart on future flights. A number of individual scenarios were assigned to the “victims,” many of whom took on their roles with gusto. The DCORT team assigned team members to support the model we created and executed their mission in an impressive manner. They escorted individuals from station to station and sat with those that needed more attention.

Red Cross team members were assigned various responsibilities including registration, mass care, security, communications, shelter management, documentation, and photography.

Red Cross volunteers who participated include Dawna Bates, Barb Janoscrat, Marge Johnson, Bill Kaminski, John Kovacevich, Dave Lieb, Evelyn Lemmon, Paul Meiss, Jane Murtland, Renee Stewart, Becky Thomas, Gene Thomas, Kathy Wagner, Arlene Wanatosky, and Gary Wenning.