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AIREX 2024 Hosted at San Diego International Airport Simulates Mass Casualty Incident

todayFebruary 8, 2024 28

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On Wednesday, January 31, 2024, the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority (Airport Authority) hosted its FAA-required triennial mass-casualty exercise – Airex 2024 – to simulate an aircraft accident at San Diego International Airport (SAN). Coordinated by the Airport Authority’s Emergency Management team, the training scenario centered around an airplane crash of a fictious airline that was engulfed in flames with 85 passengers onboard.

More than 200 Airport Authority employees, first responders, mutual aid partners and stakeholders participated in the 2-hour exercise that began at 9 a.m.  Participants included the San Diego Fire Department, San Diego Harbor Police, Falck Ambulance Services, Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Hawaiian Airlines, Jet Blue Airlines, the American Red Cross, the FAA Air Traffic Control Tower, County Public Health, local hospitals, and the Airport Authority. Employees from the Airport Authority also volunteered to role-play passengers, family members, and media representatives.

AIREX 2024 consisted of three exercises: 1) response to an aircraft accident on airport property; 2) testing of the Uninjured Passenger Care Site in the terminal; and 3) testing of the Family Reception Center at the USO.

“Everything went smoothly today, and we learned a lot,” said Susie Preiser, Manager of Emergency Management. “These practice scenarios are extremely valuable to all agencies involved. While we hope that this type of scenario never occurs, we know that our teams are prepared to collaborate and effectively respond.”

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Written by: JT

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