DOBBINS AIR RESERVE BASE, Marietta, Ga., Sept.17, 2016 – Members of 1st Brigade and the 76th Support Brigade, Georgia State Defense Force (GSDF), recently teamed up with 15 other local, state, and federal agencies for a full-scale public health exercise. GSDF Soldiers participated in loading and off-loading approximately forty simulated casualties from a C-130 Hercules aircraft. Charlie Bunn, Incident Commander during the operation, described the multiagency collaboration as, “A magnificent display of the impact the Georgia State Defense Force has on this scenario.”
Over 200 participants, including 35 GSDF Soldiers, took part in the exercise which focused on the safe movement, evaluation, and treatment of injured persons. “We rely 100% on the Georgia State Defense Force,” said Pam Blackwell, Director of Emergency Preparedness and Response for Cobb & Douglas Public Health.
The exercise was conducted at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in accordance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program. Although the primary purpose of the exercise was to evaluate the operational capabilities required by hospitals to manage victims of a mass casualty event, the procedures used to receive large numbers of patients can be utilized in hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, and other emergencies.