On April 6, 2017, a full-scale emergency training exercise was conducted in Central Florida. Over 80 agencies participated in four counties, including 26 hospitals, 16 law enforcement agencies, 16 fire department, four health departments, two ambulance services, five emergency management offices, the District Nine Medical Examiner’s Office, the University of Central Florida, Orange County Public Schools, Lynx, the Central Florida Healthcare Coalition, and many others.
The exercise simulated a complex coordinated terrorist attack taking place in Lake, Orange, Osceola, and Seminole Counties. A pizza delivery car in front of each county courthouse exploded (simulated) and dispersed radiological materials (“dirty bomb”).
There were approximately 1200 live volunteer victims and many other volunteer managers, controllers, and evaluators. These live volunteer victims were moulaged (wearing make-up and movie props to simulate various injuries). Some volunteer victims were also given Coleman Lantern mantels to carry in their pockets. These mantels are perfectly safe to handle but set off the firefighter’s Geiger meter indicating radiological materials are present prompting decontamination of patients.
Many of the capacities practiced and evaluated during this exercise were areas identified after the Pulse Nightclub shooting such as mutual aid response to mass casualty incidents and patient tracking. The exercise was funded through the State Homeland Security Grant Program and coordinated through the East Central Florida RPC.