ARFF team conducts final training at Cape Girardeau Regional Airport Friday

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – The Cape Girardeau Regional Airport hosted the final day of its Aircraft Rescue Firefighting Training on Friday.

The team simulates a real-world aircraft accident during a full-scale exercise.

While the types of accident featured in the training dont’ happen often, emergency response team have to be ready just in case.

“Of course you hope nothing like this ever happens, but you have to be as prepared as you can,” said Cape girardeau Regional Airport Manager Katrina Amos.

She says the aircraft rescue firefighting training taking place at the airport this week prepares the emergency response team for this “just in case” scenario.

“You make a plan, you say, ‘If something happens, this is how we’re going to respond.’ So this is our opportunity to test that and make sure that we’re able to respond appropriately,” said Amos.

Friday was the third and final day of training at the airport and simulated a response to a commercial plane crash at the airport.

Cape Girardeau Fire Department driver/operator Greg Foote says this full-scale simulation, which is required every three years in addition to annual training, is a necessary culmination of everything they have practiced.

“It is a very low-frequency, high-risk event to have an aircraft crash on the property or in the area, so it’s not something that we respond to frequently,” said Foote. “However, we do have to be proficient when it does happen.”

While the public may see an increased presence of emergency vehicles at the airport on Friday, both Amos and Foote remind passersby and visitors to the airport not to worry.

“If you’re driving by the airport tomorrow (Friday), don’t be alarmed,” said Amos.

“If anybody’s driving by and you do see the response at the airport tomorrow (Friday), that it all is just training evolution that we do yearly,” said Foote. “There will be smoke, there will be fire; however, it will all be contained within our prop and with our extinguishing agents.”

The training Friday began around 8 a.m. The airport and restaurant remained open.

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