Residents of Godfrey may be surprised, but shouldn’t be alarmed, when they see helicopters hovering the skies and emergency vehicles zipping around town in response to a simulated tornado disaster scenario. The drill will take place on June 24 from 8 a.m.–4 p.m. and will be focused on four Godfrey streets; Beall Court, Valley Drive, Magnolia Place, and Rosewood Court. Though this is a county wide event, Madison County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) concentrated the core damage within Godfrey. Village of Godfrey ESDA Director Larry Ringering says, “The development of the new Emergency Operations and Disaster Plan for the Village of Godfrey is an example of a well thought-out, detail oriented plan which, should it be utilized in an actual disaster, will allow for the process of providing County assistance to Godfrey to be seamless and immediate.” He further explains, “With the roll-out of their new plan, this is a great opportunity to test Godfrey and see how the plan and the responders perform.”
The drill will focus specifically on the Disaster Plan’s Damage Assessment Operations and the response of the teams conducting the assessments. There are no scheduled street closures nor should any resident in the aforementioned areas experience inconvenience during the exercise. Damage assessors will be conducting “windshield assessments” from official government vehicles. The only time a street may potentially be closed is if a support helicopter participating in the exercise needs temporarily landing to drop equipment near Godfrey Village Hall.
Village of Godfrey Deputy ESDA Director Chris Sichra is pleased that many of Godfrey’s disaster support partners will also be participating in the inter-government exercise, “This event will be an excellent way to evaluate how several of Godfrey’s Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) partners will come together at the Village level and additionally, how well the Village will network with Madison County. It will test the boundaries of calling in our volunteers, over-all communications and volunteer capabilities. Though no one likes to think about the disaster, it’s essential we have plans in place for the worst case scenario and equally as important, practice our plan!”
Since the simulation will assume damage to cell towers, amateur radio operators will be riding with damage assessment teams for communications support. Volunteers with Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) will serve as damage assessors using County tablets to record damages and send information in real time to county Emergency Operations Center. Alton Volunteer Emergency Corps (AVEC) volunteers and ambulance will be on site at the Godfrey local command post for safety/first aid needs and finally, Godfrey Public Works employees will simulate removing downed trees from roadways to allow access for assessment crews and first responders.”
Mayor McCormick is pleased that Madison County selected Godfrey for this simulation, “Though no one likes to envision an event which causes disruption to the community, the Village has dramatically improved upon disaster readinessthanks to the leadership of the Public Safety Administrator, Chris Sichra. I am eager to see our plan put into action on the 24th.”
For questions regarding the development and implementation of the Emergency Operation and Disaster plan prior to or after the exercise, please contact Public Safety Administrator: Chris Sichra at 618-433-8071 or firstname.lastname@example.org.For questions during the disaster drill, please contact Godfrey Fire Protection ChiefEric Kambarian acting as the emergency Public Information Officer. For questions regarding Madison County Emergency Management Agency, please contact Director Larry Ringering at 618-296-4478 or email@example.com.