Parish News

Parish responders team with military for drill


Teamwork is the key to success in many cases, especially when the safety of perhaps thousands of individuals hangs in the balance. And the key to refining teamwork in emergencies involving hazardous materials is training.

Hazardous material response technicians from the Louisiana National Guard 62nd Civil Support Unit and Barksdale Air Force Base’s specialized HAZMAT staff teamed with several local agencies to collectively train and enhance skills necessary to better protect communities.

Joining the military in the exercise were emergency mangers from the Bossier Office of Homeland Security, law enforcement officers from the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office, firefighters from Benton Fire District 4 and emergency medical services staff from Bossier Parish EMS.

Benton Fire Dist. 4 Chief J.T. Wallace, who served as the initial incident commander before transitioning to the Unified Command, said drills like Wednesday’s serve a very useful purpose.

“Given the multi-complex emergency challenges facing so many communities, this type of drill allows us to gain a better understanding of the resources a team response from many agencies can bring to a major incident,” he said. “It helps accomplish an efficient response to save lives and protect property.”

According to officials of the Bossier Parish response community, Major General Glenn Curtis, Adjutant General of the Louisiana National Guard, supported the 62nd CST mission to train with local responders in unique and realistic disaster drills. 

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