Tuesday, June 28, 2016

CERTs Participate in Metro Exercise UNDER Tysons Corner

Early Sunday morning, June 26, a group of about two dozen Fairfax County CERTs, along with over a hundred other volunteer actors, boarded a Metro train at the new Greensboro Station in Tysons Corner as part of a quarterly Metro emergency exercise.

Fairfax County CERTs who served as victim actors during the Metro exercise. Photos courtesy of Jonathan Kiell.
The train left the station and headed toward the District, but did not get very far before it stopped in a tunnel. Power on the train shut down, leaving only emergency lights on.

Shortly after that, the passengers began to notice smoke -- theatrical smoke was used to enhance the realism of the exercise.

Responders in the tunnel help evacuate victim actors from the stopped train.
Eventually, the order was given for those who could evacuate without assistance to move toward the back of the train, which was closest to the nearest station stop. Passengers exited the train and walked through the tunnel back to the station, while responders from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department and Metro (as well as other emergency personnel) provided assistance to those who could not evacuate on their own.

The exercise provided an interesting learning opportunity for the victim actors as well as valuable training for the first responders. And the passengers were not charged for the train ride!

Jonathan Kiell is a graduate of Fairfax County CERT Class 70 and is one of the Fairfax County CERT Local Team Coordinators; you can reach him at teams@fairfaxcountycert.org.