MAUGANSVILLE - The Hatfield Family was just beginning its family reunion at Maugansville Ruritan Park Saturday morning when two cars drag racing on Maugansville Road crashed into the gathering, killing six and injuring dozens.
That was the scenario for Saturday's mass casualty disaster exercise, which brought together first responders from a dozen fire companies and ambulance services to practice the coordination and communication skills they will need in the event of a real emergency.
Two overturned vehicles, a partially collapsed picnic pavilion, a fuel spill and people calling out for help were the sights and sounds the firefighters and emergency medical personnel were confronted with as they arrived at the scene. Inflatable mannequins represented the dead, while volunteers splattered with fake blood acted out the roles of the injured.
"I was a child with a head laceration looking for my mommy," said Tiffany Hammond, one of the volunteers.
At one point, an air horn sounded, and the fire and rescue personnel left the dead and injured, gathering at the park's baseball field bleachers. A green-vested evaluator critiqued their performance before sending them back to work.