Laurel County first responders never know what scenario they will need to respond to, but they prepare and train to be ready for any call they receive next. On Saturday, around 60 first responders trained on three school bus scenarios as part of a training exercise hosted by the London-Laurel Rescue Squad.

Nathan Kirby, public relations manager for the London-Laurel Rescue Squad, said all Laurel County agencies have been invited to participate, including fire departments and emergency management, just about all departments having a representative during the one day training Saturday.

Laurel County School Bus Garage donated three buses to training to cut and simulate crashes. The buses were taken to Jasper Recycling on South Laurel Road where they were secured to be used for training and this is where the three scenarios were set up for Saturday’s drills.

The training allowed first responders to work through three different scenarios. They were divided into groups and stayed at each scenario for about two hours, where in each scenario there were also different stations.

One scenario involved patient access and packaging i.e. some patients with certain injuries need to be safely removed in a specific way due to their injuries.

Another scenario was extrication which took tools to physically remove the body from the bus to gain access to patients.

The third scenario was for stabilization. Kirby explained that first responders can’t do anything until the bus is stabilized in certain situations. First responders therefore use jacks and struts to make sure the vehicle is not unbalanced and going nowhere.

“This training allowed departments to train with different equipment and tactics,” Kirby said. “This vital training enables first responders across the region to prepare for the difficult aspects of school bus crashes. The training should be repeated annually and all departments are welcome to attend.

The department thanked Eco Tech USA, Flowers Bakery, Allen’s Towing, TJ’s Towing, London Fire Department, Laurel County Fire Department, Bush Fire Department, Crossroads Fire Department, East Bernstadt Fire Department, Keavy Fire Department, McWhorter Fire Department, Swiss Colony Fire Department, Corbin Fire Department, Laurel County DPS and Laurel County Dispatch.

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