Rescue Drill at M11 Highway

Less than a month is remaining before opening of the final M11 Highway’s section. To get prepared for this landmark event, all emergency services took part in a drill to eliminate consequences of a potential traffic accident.

The participants were offered quite an intricate plot befitting a blockbuster, including colliding cars that caught fire and a truck driver carried away by the sight of this, so the truck overturned and blocked several lanes at once. Drill initiators were trying to model a real-life situation and took into account the human factor as well. Igor Popov, Head of Fire-Fighting and Rescue Operations at the Russian Emergency Ministry for Leningrad Region, said: “People calling emergency services are rarely able to tell the exact location of the accident. Few will tell you at which particular kilometer it happened. Usually they describe what they can see around. Therefore, the caller reporting the accident to firefighters, doctors, and the police, tried to "confuse" the traffic controller by describing the scene of the accident with such blurred wording as “behind the toll plaza”, “near the road curve”, and so on. Everyone coped successfully and quickly found that place. ”

The actions of fire-fighting and rescue teams were closely watched by doctors of the Center for Emergency and Radiation Medicine at the Russian Emergency Ministry and by experts of the Center for Emergency Psychological Aid at the Russian Emergency Ministry. After all, it is the rescuers arriving first at the accident scene who must provide first and psychological aid to the victims. This drill went smoothly too.

Victoria Dmitrieva, Head of Emergency Response Operations, the North-West Branch of the Center for Emergency Psychological Aid at the Russian Emergency Ministry, explained that all firefighters and rescuers undergo mandatory psychological training. “They are well trained to provide psychological aid to victims. Therefore, this time we only watched and made sure that the rescuers managed on their own,” said she.

Emergency Ministry experts will analyze in detail all the results of this drill, eliminate all identified deficiencies, and build on the positive experience. Anyway, today we can say for sure that the personnel and equipment of the Leningrad Region subsystem for preventing and eliminating emergency situations are ready for the intended purpose.

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