Wisconsin Rapids FD to hold hazardous material drill Tuesday morning

Published: Sep. 25, 2023 at 12:16 PM CDT
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PORT EDWARDS, Wis. (WSAW) - The Wood County Local Emergency Planning Committee in conjunction with Wisconsin Emergency Management will be hosting a full-scale training exercise involving over six local agencies.

The joint simulated hazardous materials release drill will take place at ERCO Worldwide on Tuesday, Sept. 26, from 8-11 a.m. There will be a joint simulated Hazardous Materials release at ERCO Worldwide.

The area around Highway 73 will be closed off to the public from the corner of Highway 73 & Highway 54 to Wilhorn Road on Highway 73 north of Nekoosa during the exercise times. There will be a heavy presence of Police, Fire, and EMS in that area.

The goal of all emergency planning is to create systems to ensure that responders from multiple services, jurisdictions and levels of government can effectively communicate, coordinate, and integrate their efforts in the event of a real emergency.

Other units in the county will respond to the simulated incident including the Wisconsin Rapids Fire Department and Hazardous Materials unit, ERCO Worldwide Response team, Wood County Emergency Management, Port Edwards P.D., Port Edwards F.D., Wood County Sheriffs, Nekoosa P.D., Wood County Dispatch, and Wood County Highway Department.

There may be some radio traffic on the main dispatch channels for communications, so scanners will pick up information referencing the simulated Hazardous Materials Incident.

There is no danger to the public and there will be no release of any hazardous materials for this simulation. The scenario is scheduled to be completed no later than 11 a.m. and the highway will be reopened at that time. Officials advise everyone to stay clear of the training area and make alternate plans to travel to that area during those times.