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On Saturday morning, August 27th, rescue units waited for the fog to clear up so they could put their skill to the test in a disaster mock scenario.
In the mock scenario, a school bus was overturned and collided with a chemical truck. Officials had to care for the 'injured' students while being aware of the hazards at the accident.
Jared Jacobs was one of the EMT’s on scene and said the scenario was very real, and very necessary for training.
“We started extraction and when we got the last victim out, put in the ambulance, it was about an hour," Jacobs said. "Which seems like a long time, but with what we had to deal with, and a lot of these kids were really pinned and such, we had to start on one end of the bus and work our way back.”
Antelope Memorial Hospital tested its emergency preparedness procedures in collaboration with the Neligh Fire Department, Hazmat, Neligh EMTs, area EMTs and other emergency agencies.
“On the EMS side of it" Jacobs explained, "It did open our eyes on some of the stuff that we necessary need to help us with this type of situation if it would ever happen again. And it will help us in the future if something like this would ever happen again.”
Along with being short staffed that day, there were a few other unexpected bumps in the road.
“With LifeNet, they couldn’t fly in, they got 5 miles from Neligh and then had to turn around," Jacobs said. "So that made us think on our end ‘Ok now what are we going to do with these patients that we were initially going to, and now we cant fly them.”
Jacobs said it was a learning experience for all the officials involved, and although they hope to never come across a situation like that, they now have the skills to handle it.