Missouri National Guard to conduct statewide New Madrid earthquake drill

Maj. Tamara Spicer/Missouri National Guard

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Nov. 1, 2012) — Thousands of Missouri National Guard Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen will join community, state and federal agencies for next week's Vigilant Guard Missouri exercise. The exercise, which begins Saturday, will test the Guard's ability to respond to a major earthquake along the New Madrid Seismic Zone in southeast Missouri.

"We train for the worst so that we're always at our best," said Maj. Gen. Stephen L. Danner, adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard. "Missouri's soldiers and airmen are the most battle-tested, seasoned force we've ever had. Whether they're fighting our enemies overseas or supporting the Show Me State during natural disasters at home, our troops get the job done. This exercise is an opportunity to make our force even more ready and capable."

Under the exercise scenario, citizen-soldiers and airmen will have to contend with a number of issues including disrupted public utilities and widespread infrastructure damage. Missouri units from across the state will participate.

Soldiers across the state will work through a number of missions they will likely face during a massive earthquake. Six media visits are available for training events across the state. These include in-processing out-of-state forces in St. Joseph and Camp Crowder; decontamination, search and extraction, and medical operations in Columbia; dry-span bridging in Macon; excavation and bridge-site preparation in Festus, and sling load and rafting operations in Jefferson City. 

Information and points of contact for each event are attached.

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DATE/TIME: Sunday, Nov. 4, Noon - 2 p.m.
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - In-processing out of state troops
LOCATION: Rosecrans Memorial Airport, 705 Memorial Dr., St. Joseph, MO 64503

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — The 139th Airlift Wing in St. Joseph will be one of the staging grounds for soldiers and airmen to receive out-of-state Guard units at a joint reception, staging, onward movement and integration site, or JRSOI, before going on to their missions.

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DATE/TIME: Sunday, Nov. 4, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - Medical, decon, search and extraction ops
LOCATION: Boone County Fire Protection District Training Complex, 5225 N. Roger I. Wilson Memorial Drive, Columbia 

COLUMBIA, Mo. —  About 200 Missouri National Guardsmen will make up the Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and high yield Explosive (CBRNE) Task Force that will partner with local emergency personnel to participate in the upcoming state-wide earthquake response exercise, Operation Vigilant Guard. The Guard's CBRNE team will respond to a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, or high yield Explosive (CBRNE) incidents and support local, state, and federal agencies managing the consequences of the event by providing capabilities to conduct casualty/patient decontamination, medical support, and casualty search and extraction.

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DATE/TIME: Sunday, Nov. 4, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - In-processing out-of-state troops 
LOCATION: Camp Crowder, Neosho, Mo.

NEOSHO, Mo. — The Missouri National Guard will participate in Vigilant Guard, a national-level exercise designed to test the Guard's response in the event a large magnitude earthquake were to happen in the New Madrid Seismic Zone in southeast Missouri. The exercise will take place Nov. 3-7 throughout Missouri, and ideal media coverage in southwest Missouri is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4 at Camp Crowder in Neosho.

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DATE/TIME: Monday, Nov. 5, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - Excavating and site-prep operations
LOCATION: Festus National Guard Armory, 2740 Hwy. P, Festus, Mo. 63028

FESTUS, Mo. — Soldiers of the Festus-based 220th Engineer Company will use their heavy excavating equipment to prepare a bridge site as though a bridge spanning Interstate 55 in Jefferson County had collapsed. Following the site preparation, the Macon-based 1438th Engineer Company will spend the next few days constructing a dry-span ribbon bridge as thought they were spanning the highway to replace the collapsed overpass. The work will take place at the Festus National Guard Armory, where there are several acres available for training purposes.

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DATE/TIME: Monday, Nov. 5, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - Bridging operations
LOCATION: Macon National Guard Armory, 1616 South Missouri St., (Hwy 63)
Macon Mo. 63552 

MACON, Mo. — More than 125 Guardsmen of the 1438th Multi-Role Bridge Company will be assigned the daunting task of replacing collapsed bridges, both over water and roadways. Bridging operations will take place at the Macon armory site, at the Ike Skelton Training Site in Jefferson City, and at the Festus
armory.

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DATE/TIME: Tuesday, Nov. 6, 8:30-10:30 a.m.
EVENT: Vigilant Guard Exercise - Sling load and rafting operations
LOCATION: Ike Skelton Training Site, Jefferson City, Mo.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Missouri National Guard's 1438th Engineer Multi-Role Bridge Company, of Macon and Kirksville, is scheduled to conduct sling load and rafting operations as part of Vigilant Guard between 8:30-10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 6, at Ike Skelton Training Site. Sling load operations involve safely attaching equipment and supplies under rotary-wing aircraft to be transported to a different location. The company will be supported by rotary-wing aircraft from the Kansas National Guard for this portion of the exercise.

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