Area agencies team up for yearly training drill at MUW

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – It’s only a drill.

But each step, each part of a plan can make a difference if there’s an emergency.

The Lowndes County Emergency Management Agency planned these drills and worked alongside other first responders, training at Mississippi University for Women.

It’s been more than two decades since a tornado swept through the campus of Mississippi University for Women, and today the campus was used as a training ground to prepare for when or if disaster strikes again.

Lowndes County EMA director Cindy Lawrence said having a plan can make a difference in real-life situations.

“We do this drill just to test our plans and our communication to make sure that we are prepared in the event that we have a tornado here in Lowndes County. We all participate because we want to make sure that we know the response plan on the MUW campus in case there is an incident over here,” said Lawrence.

MUW students were able to work alongside the local agencies.

As an instructor, Lisa Griffin prepares future nurses for real-life situations. She said it’s important that students are prepared before and after graduation.

“We can tell them about it all day long but until they actually see it, it’s not real. All the students we have here will be graduating in May and unfortunately, disasters will happen in their careers. We are hoping this will prepare them for when it does happen for the real world and kind of be able to see what the different agencies do and their response to the situation,” said Griffin.

Lawrence said the fire agencies even incorporated a new training drill.

“We are repelling off the roof because we know sometimes we have buildings that collapse or we have people that are trapped and we wanted them to get an opportunity to practice today and repel some people off the building,” said Lawrence.

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