Richmond, Va., March 19, 2019 —
Tornados might seem out of place in Virginia, which is nowhere near America’s so-called Tornado Alley, but they do happen here. And when they do, the aftermath can be devastating, which is why Defense Logistics Agency Aviation at Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia, employees participate in a Statewide Tornado Drill each year.
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management designated Tuesday, March 19, for this year’s drill, which began at 9:45 am. At that time, the National Weather Service sent a test tornado warning over National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather radios, and a test message was also broadcast on local television stations.
William H. Bullock Sr., installation emergency manager with Security and Emergency Services, DLA Installation Management Richmond, said the drill is an opportunity for the entire installation to exercise the Occupant Emergency Plan. The primary steps of the plan are: seek shelter and accountability for all organizations on the installation.
To prep for the drill, Bullock said, a working group meeting was held March 7 to coordinate Installation Management resources and to review the exercise. “A system broadcast email message was sent out with a tornado checklist, and all activities and tenants should have an Occupant Emergency Plan that details the expectations of how our workforce should react to various natural disasters—including tornados,” he said.
“Every year, more and more members of the DSCR community actively participate in our installation level exercises thus improving the workforce’s ability to react to natural and manufactured threats,” Bullock says. “We are increasing their chances of surviving a dangerous or catastrophic event.”