Today, Vancouver International Airport (YVR) hosted a multi-agency training exercise simulating an aircraft crash. The event included nearly 500 participants from 25 different agencies across Sea Island and the Lower Mainland. This training provides crucial opportunities to practice emergency response plans with business partners and the airport community. Airport operations were not affected by this exercise.
“At YVR, safety is our number one priority. We view exercises and training as an essential part of this commitment to safety by remaining prepared in the unlikely event of an incident,” said Robyn McVicker, Vice President, Operations & Maintenance, Vancouver Airport Authority. “I was pleased to see the level of coordination between all our partners and volunteers to effectively manage the simulated emergency. Hosting multi-agency training allows us to test our Emergency Management Plan in realistic conditions and helps refine our plans to incorporate the knowledge gained.”
Today’s training exercise simulated a mock aircraft crash. The scenario involved a mid-air collision between an inbound aircraft and a helicopter necessitating an emergency landing for the aircraft. The fictional flight received significant damage to its landing equipment and crashed upon landing at YVR. The simulated aircraft wreckage was attended to by emergency responders. A family and friends zone was also set up to simulate the care and dissemination of information needed during an emergency. A team of volunteers played injured victims, passengers, family members and mock media, giving everyone involved a realistic experience.
Emergency exercises are a key part of YVR’s Emergency Management Plan and are performed on a regular basis. Emergency exercises can include live scenario training, table-top exercises and emergency simulation drills. YVR’s Emergency Management Plan deals with all emergency situations including aircraft incidents, natural disasters, medical emergencies, security threats and biological hazards. It is refined on a regular basis to incorporate knowledge learned through exercise and the latest developments in airport safety and emergency management.