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Homeland Security

Emergency Response Team Drills for Disaster

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS090914-06
Release Date: 9/14/2009 8:52:00 AM

By Richard McManus, Public Affairs, U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka

YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) -- Members of U.S. Naval Hospital (USNH) Yokosuka's emergency response team (ERT), along with the Japanese Military Self Defense Force, police, firefighters, medical teams and private citizens, participated in the Kanagawa Prefecture Government (KPG) evacuation drill Aug. 29, at Kamoi Elementary and Junior High School near Yokosuka Naval Base.

"We routinely participate in drills like this throughout the year. They allow us to practice with Kanagawa prefectural first responders and strengthen our ability to operate together," said Lt. Virgilio Cresini, a nurse at USNH Yokosuka and a member of the ERT.

The KPG drill is an annual event that not only helps first responders prepare for mass casualty emergencies, but also marks the anniversary of the Kanto earthquake of 1923.

In addition to sharpening their skills, the ERT members showed equipment and explained techniques used to care for the injured to the local community and other groups involved in the drill.

"By taking part in this drill, we show local officials and the community that we are committed to supporting the Navy's and Japan's efforts to bring rapid humanitarian assistance to the public if ever needed," said Cmdr. Dipak Nadkarni, director for medical services at USNH Yokosuka.

The ERT is an organized, well-trained and equipped on-site casualty collection and treatment unit, providing triage, resuscitation, stabilization and casualty evacuation assistance. It is comprised of 30 members and capable of providing limited basic support to approximately 100 casualties before replenishing resources.

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