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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Residents may see smoke and several emergency vehicles near the Colorado Springs Airport Wednesday as the Colorado Springs Airport and Office of Emergency Management conduct a mass casualty response exercise. Airport operations will not be affected by the exercise.

More than 700 participants from agencies across the Pikes Peak region will participate in this mass casualty exercise to test their procedures for responding to a simulated aircraft emergency and exercise the use of the National Incident Management System (NIMS).

The exercise will be divided into two phases: 1) Crash site response near the COS Airport; and 2) patient in-processing at local hospitals.

Phase one: Crash site exercise area: Cresterra Pkwy between Milton Proby Parkway and Powers Blvd.

Exercise timeframe: 7 a.m.-noon

What the public may see: smoke, fire, emergency vehicles, buses with “patients”, medevac helicopters and police foot patrols.

Phase two: Hospital patient in-processing: UCHealth (Central and North campuses), Penrose St. Francis Health Services and St Francis Medical Center.

Exercise time: 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

What the public may see: "airplane crash victims" with stage makeup to simulate serious injuries will be transported by emergency vehicles and buses to local hospitals around Colorado Springs.

Road closures: Cresterra Boulevard between Milton Proby Parkway and Powers Blvd will be closed between 5 a.m. – 1 p.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires all airports with scheduled air carrier service to conduct a full scale emergency exercise every three years and tabletop exercises all other years.  The last airport exercise was conducted in 2014.

32 participating agencies to include:

  • Colorado Springs Airport
  • Colorado Springs Dispatch
  • Colorado Springs Fire
  • Colorado Springs OEM
  • Colorado Springs Police
  • American Medical Response
  • American Red Cross
  • Black Forest Fire
  • Broadmoor Fire
  • Cimarron Hills Fire
  • Donald Wescott Fire
  • El Paso County Coroner
  • El Paso County Public Health
  • El Paso County Office of Emergency Management
  • El Paso County Sheriff’s Office
  • Evans Army Community Hospital
  • Flight for Life
  • Fort Carson Fire & Emergency Services
  • Fountain Fire
  • Independence Center
  • Manitou Fire
  • Medical Reserve Corps of El Paso County
  • Memorial Star
  • Penrose St. Francis Health Services
  • Peterson Air Force Base 21st Space Wing Medical Team
  • Peterson Air Force Base Office of Emergency Management
  • Peterson Air Force Base Fire
  • Security Fire
  • St. Francis Medical Center
  • Stratmoor Hills Fire
  • UC Health - Memorial Hospital Central
  • UC Health - Memorial Hospital North

Follow us on Twitter at @Springsgov or #COSAirportDrill for exercise information and coverage.