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In March, University of Arizona College of Education Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Disability and Psychoeducational Studies, Vanessa M. Perry, alongside M.A. Counseling student, Stephanie Moller participated in an emergency exercise at Tucson International Airport - TUS. Both Dr. Perry and Stephanie are Disaster Mental Health Volunteers with American Red Cross.
Dr. Perry said the exercise was a disaster response simulation coordinated by Tucson Airport Authority in collaboration with Southwest Airlines, American Red Cross, Arizona Air National Guard, Pima County Office of Emergency Management, Transportation Security Administration, and Tucson Fire Department, and must be conducted once every three years to prepare for a mass casualty incident at the airport. This event simulated damage to the front landing gear resulting in a hard landing with several passengers "injured" and one "possible fatality." ARC Disaster Mental Health Volunteers provided psychological first aid to simulated victims and their family members. The exercise was a valuable learning experience in providing support to everyday people caught in the midst of a traumatic event, and she and Stephanie look forward to continuing to serve as Disaster Mental Health Volunteers.
Read more about the emergency training exercise.