MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Emergency responders at the 167th Airlift Wing participated in an all-hazards training course May 1-5 to prepare for real-world incidents.
The hybrid CAMR program, short for Counter CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) All-Hazard Management Response, incorporated classroom lectures, tabletop exercises and a full-scale emergency response exercise.
Subject matter expert trainers facilitated the course.
“The CAMR gives our disaster response force an opportunity to really hone the skills critical to mitigating loss of life, loss of property and damage to the environment during CBRN and emergency responses,” said Lt. Col. Paul Henry, 167th Airlift Wing inspector general. “The cadre provided a phenomenal learning experience for all of the functions involved.”
Scott Broadribb, senior CBRN trainer, said his team was not there to critique procedures but to provoke thought.
“We can give you the answer, but that’s not really learning anything,” Broadribb said. “So, the goal for the evolution is to foster thought and outside-of-the-box thinking.”
Security forces, firefighters, emergency management, bioenvironmental and public health personnel participated in courses specific to their functions. A tabletop exercise allowed all emergency responders to step through their response plans and checklists before the full-scale exercise on the fourth day.
The West Virginia Air National Guard’s 167th conducted three previous CAMR exercises, but this year was the first time that the 167th’s emergency responders assigned to the Crisis Action Team, Emergency Operations Center and Unit Control Center functions were able to view the initial response to an active shooter and vehicle extraction before returning to their respective work centers to coordinate recovery efforts.
“The CAMR exercise was a great opportunity for me and others to immerse into the emergency response processes,” said Capt Rodney Brown, 167th Airlift Wing executive officer. “In this low-pressure and learning environment, the shared knowledge betters equips me for real-world events.”