Local News

Emergency crews tackle airplane crash drill

Disaster drill

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - It's a worst case scenario and crews in southern Colorado are training for real life emergencies.

You may have seen emergency vehicles put out a plane that was on fire, but it was all part of a drill that Colorado Springs Airport has to go through every three years as required by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Hundreds of bodies were scattered everywhere and a plane was consumed by flames.

Colorado Springs Fire Capt. David Vitwar said this drill is as close to a real plane crash as you can get.

"You're not just reading the tag, but you're actually seeing the injuries," he said.

More than 100 people were put in accident make up to make the situation look as realistic as possible.

Even though it was only an exercise, first responders treated it as more than that.

"I try to get involved in the moment and into my medical mode and try to assist anyone that's injured," Army 1st Sgt. Patrick Johnson said.

Emergency crews were put to the test and paramedics had to take actors playing as injured people to five different hospitals around Colorado Springs either through ambulances, buses or helicopters.

"What we are going to do is not only treat patients through our emergency department but through our entire hospital. We're going to see and test our decision making our logistics, our ability to transport and to make good decisions under pressure," Dr. Andrew Berson said, who is Director of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery at Memorial Hospital.

Not only is the training important for emergency crews, but it's also meant for organizations like the Salvation Army.

"In events like this people are in shock and they're not thinking about eating and keeping themselves sustained so that's where we step in," Salvation Army Lt. Jeff Williams said.

Even though this was only drill, southern Colorado's resources were put to the test.

The next airplane crash drill at Colorado Springs Airport will happen in 2017

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