Manchester emergency workers run drill with mock chopper crash
City emergency workers brace for reality at mock chopper crash
Lisa Smith-Brunelle, a CMC nurse, plays an injured person during Catholic Medical Center's emergency disaster drill Saturday in Manchester. Thomas Roy/Union Leader
Manchester firefighters and EMTs take a "victim" from Truck 1 during Catholic Medical Center's emergency disaster drill Saturday in Manchester. Thomas Roy/Union Leader
"It was all hands on deck," said Lu Mulla, CMC vice president of operations/emergency services.
Firefighters carried dummies down the Manchester Fire Department truck ladders, which were long enough to reach the rooftop landing pad. CMC officials said it is the only elevated landing area in the state and makes the Manchester hospital a primary receiving center for critical care.
Initially, the idea was to see if the ladders were high enough to reach if anybody was stranded. The ladders reached, but the drill had grown a lot more complex during a planning process.
One surprise that caught even Mulla off-guard was the helicopter pilot putting on a performance during his approach, weaving through the air like he really was about to crash, before safely touching down in a routine landing. The hospital did not shut down during the drill, so the three "code blue" cases that came in Saturday morning really were cardiac distress that needed immediate attention.
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