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Wranglers conduct a major aircraft accident response exercise

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Cody Dowell
  • 90th Missile Wing Public Affairs

“Failure to plan is planning to fail.” This famous Benjamin Franklin quote applies still today, 90th Missile Wing Airmen put their major accident response plan to the test during an aircraft accident exercise to ensure they are ready to respond to any scenario on F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, June 29, 2022.

The exercise proved security forces, medical and firefighting Airmen could quickly respond to an aircraft crash during an airshow.

"If we didn't hold exercises, we wouldn’t know where the weaknesses lie in our ability to execute low-frequency tasks," said Maj. S. Vincent Yoder, 90 MW Inspector General Office chief of plans and programs. "It is better to find those gaps before real-world emergencies."

The day started with first responders from the 90th Security Forces Squadron, 90th Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Department, and the 90th Medical Group assessing immediate threats, establishing cordons, providing lifesaving medical care and communicating essential safety information to the public.

“The exercise showcased that we are medics first and our specialties second,” said Maj. Liz Buss, 90th Operational Medical Readiness Squadron base physical therapist. “I’m proud of how we provided rapid response on-scene medical care. It’s critical to take the time to practice those skills, so we are ready to be a medic anytime, anyplace.”

The base partnered with community first responders to simulate and test transporting severely injured patients to medical facilities. Medical personnel triaged the injured. Then firefighters transported them out of danger. American Medical Response ambulances and helicopter aircrews from UCHealth LifeLine transported the more serious injured people to Cheyenne Regional Medical Center. While security forces defenders quickly secured the scene ensuring the safety of the spectators.

“In a significant event, we would leverage our on-base resources,” said Yoder. “Our resources aren't infinite, and especially in the event of a high casualty event on base, or important incident off base, we would absolutely rely on our community partners through all phases of response and recovery.”

In the end, the desired outcome of all exercises is to prepare teams to respond more effectively to all possible real-world emergencies they may face throughout their careers.