Released by the East Texas Council of Governments

Canton, TX, November 1, 2012: The East Texas Council of Governments, in partnership with Regional Advisory Council Trauma Service Area Regions F and G, the City of Canton & Van Zandt County Emergency management, will conduct a Full Scale, Regional Safety Exercise on November 6-8, 2012 in Canton, Texas.

This 72 hour, around the clock event will begin at 7:00 AM on November 6, and will incorporate local and regional emergency responders; local, regional, and state public works agencies; private business partners; and various state / federal agencies and over 60 participating hospitals through the Regional Advisory Council Trauma Service Area Regions F and G; and EMTF Region 4.

The multi day exercise, involving 400 to 500 participants will test many areas of emergency management and medical response. Scenarios during the 3 day exercise will include: a structural collapse, a dive rescue recovery, a confined space-low angle/high angle rescue, a dam break, a hazardous material spill a wide area search and rescue, medical special needs sheltering and two active shooter enactments.  


Over the course of the 72-hour exercise, emergency response will be staged in Canton and the surrounding area. The exercise will begin with a scenario of a tornado that touches down in various locations across Van Zandt County. Emergency responders will attend to a structural collapse scenario at Tyler Pipe located at 11910 County Road 492 in Tyler. A dive rescue recovery and a search and rescue operation will be conducted by area CERT teams at the Canton City Lake “Mill Creek Reservoir” located at 410 Arnold Paul Road in Canton. A mass fatalities/casualties scenario will be conducted at the First Monday Trade Grounds theoretically caused by a tornado during First Monday Trade Days. This scenario will allow first responders, EMS and regional medical facilities to test tracking victims as they are transported for medical care via ambulance, helicopter or Ambus. Mass Casualties also test the medical surge response at area hospitals. There will be a active shooter scenarios held at the Van Zandt County Courthouse and also at Canton Trade Days. Daytime and nighttime aircraft landing zones will be established and coordinated for the removal of victims to nearby hospital facilities.

Behind the scenes, a Base of Operations will be established, incorporating major aspects of the Incident Command System, Communications Inter-Operability, and various IT related events, i.e., WEB EOC, video conferencing. Regional hospital facilities will coordinate and receive injured patients in their respective emergency rooms. The State of Texas Type III Incident Management Team will be providing the Command and Control element. Command and control activities, as well as Level II Staging and Aerial Operations, will be conducted from Splash Kingdom located at 18814 Interstate 20, Canton, Texas.