It’s only a drill: Disaster response practice at airport Sunday

Island first responders plan to respond to a simulated emergency as part of a hands-on training exercise at the business park and airport.

The Martha's Vineyard Airport commission met Wednesday in executive session to discuss management issues. — File photo by Ralph Stewart

Island first responders plan to stage an emergency drill near the Martha’s Vineyard Airport terminal and in the Airport Business Park on Sunday, March 29, from 10 am to 1 pm. Island police, firefighters, and emergency medical personnel, and the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital will practice their response to a simulated disaster, in coordination with airport safety and fire personnel.

Airport passengers and other airport users may be restricted from some areas for brief periods during the drill, and the airport will be closed for approximately three hours, according to a press release.

Drill organizers advise residents of the area as well as motorists on nearby roadways not to be alarmed when they see activities associated with the simulated disaster. The response will include many emergency vehicles, and smoke may be generated as part of the exercise.

The drill is required by the Federal Aviation Administration every three years, and will allow federal regulators and airport personnel to assess readiness for a real disaster. For more information, contact airport operations at 508-693-7022.