By Lt. Christopher Stanley, IST Manager
Kern Valley State Prison

On Nov. 7, Kern Valley State Prison (KVSP) staff conducted their inaugural Mass Casualty Incident Drill. Approximately 150 KVSP staff converged on Facility D for an exciting day of training. This training was the culmination of a year of preparation in collaboration with state and local agencies, working to provide the most realistic training environment possible.

The drill consisted of approximately 50 role players including 30 simulated victims, ranging from fatalities to minor injuries, and approximately 60 custody staff and California Correctional Health Care Services (CCHCS) employees as responders to the incident.

It was a great opportunity for multiple disciplines to work together toward a common goal utilizing effective communication and team work.

This was a major undertaking, including having representatives from the Kern County Emergency Response Team, working in collaboration with CDCR and CCHCS staff from KVSP, California City Correctional Facility, Wasco State Prison, Avenal State Prison, North Kern State Prison and McFarland Community Correctional Facility. This training was a huge success because of each and every member involved.

The vision for the future of this drill is to continue to add outside agencies in an effort to more accurately create a Mass Casualty Incident to help ensure preparedness in the event of a real emergency.

The KVSP Management Team extends its appreciation to the Education Department for their assistance as role players and providing the staff and equipment necessary to video record the training. Additionally, none of this could have been accomplished without the efforts of all the staff who participated in this day of training. All displayed great effort and embraced the importance of multiple departments working together.