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2008-06-20: Joint simulation exercise – testing our preparedness for major events

TODAY,  the  20th  of  June  2008  the  City  of  Johannesburg’s  Emergency Management Services held a simulation exercise at the Metro Centre building in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.

This  was  done as part of an exercise to establish the city’s readiness to respond to emergencies in 2010.

The  simulation  was  built  around  a gas explosion which causes a wall to collapse  in one of the Block’s basement. Two people were reported as being injured and twelve were unaccounted for.

Emergency  personnel  needed  to  respond on time, assess the situation and rescue  the  two  injured. With the help of sniffer dogs and search cameras would  assist  to  locate the twelve missing people. The Johannesburg Metro Department, Emergency Management Services, City Power and Egoli Gas managed to respond within minutes to the incident reported.

The  exercises  s  evidence  that  the  city  will  be  able  to respond to emergencies and disasters in its area of jurisdiction.

A  means  for  demonstrating the effectiveness of an emergency programme is through the conducting of exercises. Exercises demonstrate the following:
·   Effectiveness of plans
·   Procedures
·   Training and equipment
·   Adequate of response arrangements and resources
·   Capability of response personnel in performing their tasks
·   To provide a forum for exploring and testing revisions, modifications and new and/or proposed changes to any emergency programme element in near realistic situations.

This  exercise created awareness amongst the staff of Metro Centre building about the emergency planning and evacuation drills.