Vernon airport prepares for plane crashes

Several agencies practised emergency response in tabletop exercise

What would happen if an airplane crashed into Okanagan Lake?

That is the question the City of Vernon Airport tackled in a table-top emergency exercise Thursday, Dec. 12.

Together with RCMP, BC Ambulance Service, Vernon Search and Rescue, Vernon Civilian Air Search and Rescue, Vernon Fire Rescue Services and city staff, planned a cross-agency response to the hypothetical situation.

“This tabletop exercise is a good opportunity for all the responding agencies to get together to work through the City’s Airport Emergency Response Plan,” airport supervisor Ian Adkins said. “An incident such as a plane crash could require the involvement of all these agencies.”

The agencies also heard from local pilots with the knowledge of aircraft types that are common at Vernon Airport to explain how to handle an aircraft if it crashed in the water.

“These practice scenarios help familiarize all agencies with the airport protocols and they support our regulatory requirement to hold a tabletop exercise annually, and a major practice scenario once every four years,” Adkins said. “I think everyone comes away with a good refresher on dealing with aircraft incidents and each time we learn something new.”

Vernon Fire Chief David Lind said exercises like this are excellent practice for executing plans in a cross-agency response.

“We build relationships with a number of agencies, identify gaps in emergency response plans and make adjustments in a safe environment,” Lind said. “These are important tools in emergency management.”

If a catastrophic air transport incident were to occur, the City’s Emergency Management Plan would trigger an alert on the City of Vernon website and those registered for emergency alerts would be notified through the VernonConnect mobile app or by email.

“As emergencies can happen any time, it’s vital that we all take steps to prepare ourselves and our families,” emergency program coordinator Sue Saunders said. “This includes planning how we will access important information during an emergency.”

To register for emergency information, visit vernon.ca/subscribe and enter your email address. Residents can also download the VernonConnect app, free of charge. Notifications will be sent to mobile devices during an emergency.

READ MORE: Enderby pilot to make second journey to Antarctica

READ MORE: City of Vernon invests in safety, infrastructure and well-being in 2020 budget


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Salmon Arm’s Natalie Wilkie earns bronze in world cup competition

Shuswap talent posts third-fastest qualification time for event

AIM Roads to focus on clearing compact snow and slush, enable roads to drain

Snow accumulation exceeds 10-year records in Malakwa, Enderby, Squilax

Warm temperatures close Shuswap outdoor skating rinks

Rinks had been open only a few days when weather changed

January brings record snowfall to Shuswap’s Larch Hills

Up to 800 downed trees removed so far from cross-country ski trails

Break in a “poke in the eye” to Shuswap ski club

Larch Hills Nordics looking at security improvements for chalet

VIDEO: Nickelback gears up for nostalgia tour

Canadian band joins Stone Temple Pilots for a summer tour that includes just one stop in Canada

Summerland taxes expected to rise by 4.0%

Increase to add an estimated $77.73 to typical tax bill

Province asks health-care staff to be ‘vigilant’ in screening for possible coronavirus cases

This comes after U.S. health officials confirmed a case of the virus in Washington State

Tourism visits to the Thompson/Okanagan up 18 per cent year-over-year

In 2019, almost 11.4 million people spent at least one night visiting the region

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

B.C. player becomes only second Canadian to enter Hall of Fame of Baseball

Walker received 76.6 percent of the Baseball Writers of America Association vote

PHOTOS: Heavy snowfall breaks window, causing avalanche into B.C. newsroom office

It was a chaotic start to the week for the Kitimat Northern Sentinel

Kelowna International Airport to help ease people with autism into flying

The tour will take families through the entire pre-flight process

Most Read