Mock School Bus Accident in Harrisonburg

By: Amelia Nahmias Email
By: Amelia Nahmias Email

HARRISONBURG -- A mock school bus accident brings Harrisonburg rescue squads and school administration to Skyline Middle School.

Imagine a Jeep hits the side of a school bus, blocking the door. Rescue crews have to take children out of the back doors.

A passenger, 6th grade Kie Lockhart says it felt real.

"Me and my friend were talking on the bus and we were talking about how we were nervous and stuff. So it was kind of frightening," describes Lockhart.

Harrisonburg Fire Deputy Chief Mike Brady says its important to run this drill every year.

Brady says, "we don't get to do this a lot, thank goodness. We don't get these calls very often, but we want to be prepared when we do have to. This is an easy way."

The children won't recognize rescue crews, so it's important to have school administrators on the scene.

Harrisonburg City Schools Director of School Safety Craig Mackail says this exercise trains them as well.

"I think that it gives school administrators confidence that if something like this happens we'll be able to respond in the correct way," says Mackail.

The scramble to get all the kids safely off the bus, Is stressful to everyone.

"I think dealing with kids, especially, has the tendency to heighten anxieties when you have to respond to children no matter how you look at it,." Brady says.

Rescue crews get the most practice, treating each child as if their injuries are real. Tagging each child based on the severity of the injury.

Once the kids were tagged, they are put in an ambulance, taken to the hospital so that the doctors can also practice seeing a large influx of patients.

Even the emergency room at RMH saw some action Monday.

For Lockhart, "it felt kinda weird, cause it actually felt like i had a fractured hand and a fractured foot."

The fire department, RMH, Harrisonburg Rescue Squad, and Harrisonburg City School administrators, run this drill every year.


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