"Operation October" Oregon, TOPOFF4 Related?
"Operation October, designed to simulate a countywide multiple explosives incident, will be launched in dramatic fashion." This is possibly tied to the TOPOFF4
massive terror drill in Portland.
Please see PMC News for all Drill updates:
Operation October, designed to simulate a countywide multiple explosives incident, will be launched in dramatic fashion.
At 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, a call will be received at the Yamhill Communications Agency dispatch center in McMinnville that a bomb has just gone off at the building across from the courthouse where the Yamhill County commissioners have their offices.
Local law enforcement and emergency medical personnel will respond, along with the Oregon State Police Bomb Squad, which will send its robots and other equipment into the building in search of any additional explosive devices.
Streets in the immediate area will be cordoned off, occupants of nearby buildings will be notified and the Yamhill County Jail will be locked down.
Three elementary schools - Carlton Elementary, Newberg's Mabel Rush and Sheridan's Faulconer-Chapman - will each be informed of reports a bomb has been planted in the building. Those schools will be evacuated.
John Boynton, the county's emergency manager, will be positioned at the Dayton Fire Hall, where the primary emergency operations center will be located. He will monitor activities at the commissioners office and each of the schools.
"This drill will best the communication, accountability and coordination of the participating local, county, state and federal agencies and the school districts," Boynton said.
He estimates it will take about an hour for the exercise to play itself out at each of the schools, and about two hours, or possibly longer, at the commissioners office. That's because of involvement there of the bomb squad.
Faulconer-Chapman Principal Marti Hofenbredl said her staff has been training for the exercise for the past three weeks, meeting with representatives of the sheriff's office and the Sheridan Fire District.
"We're fixing our plan and fixing our plan," Hofenbredl said. "We've sent letters home to parents. Another letter goes home Monday. My biggest fear is parents coming to school to pick up their children for some reason and finding everyone evacuated."
She said the exercise should benefit students and staff greatly. She said exercises like this instill confidence in everyone, particularly the students.
"When Faulconer Grade School burned down, luckily it was at night," said Hofenbredl, who was teaching there at the time - March of 1998. "But had that fire happened during the day, we could have gotten everyone out."
Faulconer-Chapman has an enrollment of about 650 students, and Hofenbredl said the goal is to get them all evacuated in the course of three minutes. She'll find out Tuesday if her staff and students can accomplish that.
In addition to the commissioners, their office staffers and the schools, the roster of participants will include police and medical first responders from Carlton, Yamhill, McMinnville, Newberg and Sheridan, the public works departments from those cities, the Oregon State Police, American Red Cross and FCI Sheridan inmates and staff.
Citizens are asked not to call 911 to inquire about or report on elements of the exercise, which will be playing out between 1:30 and 4:30 p.m., rain or shine.
contribute to this article
contribute to this article
add comment to discussion