Emergency officials finish hazardous waste response exercise

The Bartholomew County Local Emergency Planning Committee, along with Brown and Monroe counties, finished a tabletop exercise Wednesday on a simulated response to a hazardous materials situation in the county.

According to the Bartholomew County Emergency Management Department, the simulation is a discussion-based exercise that lets responders talk through a scenario and the response to an incident. The agencies worked together to mitigate a simulated large-scale hazardous materials incident.

Organizers say this is the first of a multi-year exercise process to ensure local plans and procedures allow for the most effective and safe response to an incident.

Among the Bartholomew County agencies taking part were the county E911, emergency management and health departments, Columbus Regional Health medics and the hospital, Columbus fire, police, utilities, and public works departments. The Columbus Township Fire Department, Bartholomew Consolidated Schools, Mariah Foods, Cummins, American Red Cross and the Louisville & Indiana railroad also took part.

Indiana Department of Homeland Security and the Environmental Protection Agency for Region 5 also participated.