Buffalo Airport Fire Department’s Emergency Response Exercise

The Buffalo Airport Fire Department, along with other local first responders, staged a full-scale emergency drill to test the response to a catastrophic incident on airport grounds in August. Dozens of volunteers took part in the simulation based on a scenario in which a diverted aircraft overshoots the runway and crossed out onto Genesee Street near Holtz Road. The exercise included mock injuries, fatalities and a jet fuel spill on airport property.

This exercise served as practice for the Airport Fire Department and for local agencies that would potentially respond to a similar incident. Airport fire fighters, NFTA police and other emergency workers, along with airport personnel, simulated the duties they would perform during a real emergency.

“Federal Aviation Administration regulations require a full-scale exercise once every three years to test the airport’s emergency plan,” stated Lee Weitz, director of aviation. “This is an excellent opportunity for us to test and evaluate our rescue skills. Our top priority is the health and safety of both our passengers and staff, and the entire Western New York Community.”

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