JONESBORO -- Since September 11th, the treat of terrorist attacks has become very real, even here in Region 8. Some say that being prepared is the key to survival...and 13 counties in Northeast Arkansas agree.
Wednesday's mock disaster drill looked like a scene from a movie: Bodies on the ground, men in white space suits, and emergency personnel saving lives.
"This is probably the largest drill that we've ever participated in. this was the whole region, all the way from Helena from the south up to Piggott in the north and all the acute care hospitals and counties involved have been involved in planning this," said Kathryn Blackman, Regional Leader of the NEA Bio-Terrorism Preparedness & Response team.
said Jonesboro Fire Chief Butch Herring.
Event organizers had 38 volunteers come in and play the role of victims. Many were assigned as victims of Ricin and had to be decontaminated on the scene, while others were 'treated' at the St. Bernards emergency room. Fire officials were able to practice their hazardous materials management on volunteer victims on the scene, complete with bio-terrorism suits. Victims playing the part of the walking wounded also helped doctors diagnose injuries.