Teams to the rescue

EMTs treat the simulated injuries of people role-playing as "victims" while Mason County Sheriff's deputies secure the area and evaluators observe during a training exercise Saturday at the West Shore Educational Services District.

AMBER TWP. — Cries of, “Help, I’ve been shot!” rang through the school as actors covered in fake blood waited for first responders to address their simulated injuries.

The event was a full-scale disaster training exercise Saturday morning for Mason County Emergency Management, Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital and various first responder agencies.

At about 7 a.m., the training began at the West Shore Educational Services District, and the scenario was to rescue, triage and transport the casualties of a mass-shooting from the school to the hospital. The purpose was to test and improve local emergency response capabilities for a potential catastrophe, such as a mass-casualty incident following an active assailant attack.

An estimated 100 people participated in the exercise, including sheriff’s deputies, firefighters, paramedics and hospital workers, as well as school employees and community members, about 20 of whom were the scenario’s “victims.”

“They’re not ‘victims,’ they’re survivors, because we expect you guys to save everyone,” Liz Reimink, the Mason County Emergency Management coordinator, told the first responders before the scenario began.

To read the full story, check out the print or E-edition of Monday's Ludington Daily News.