28 October 1983
Carrier disaster just a drill
MONTGOMERY — On Oct. 3. the Carrier Foundation experienced a major disaster at the Belle Mead facility that involved the destruction of property and more than 30 injured people.
However, the disaster was not real; it was a drill designed to prepare in the event of an actual disaster
Every year, the Carrier Foundation conducts a disaster drill in accordance with the requirements of the state Department of Health and the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals.
The scenario for the 1983 disaster drill called for the boiler adjacent to the gymnasium to explode while teen agers and adults were playing
volleyball. This resulted in a fire, loss of power and “victims” with varying degrees of wounds, such as second and third degree bums, fractured limbs and other serious injuries.
The Carrier staff immediately responded to the disaster call, providing the “victims” with medical attention and first aid in treatment sites hastily established in certain hospital areas.
For the 1983 drill. Carrier joined forces with the Fifth District of the state First Aid Council, which encompasses the surrounding area Montgomery Township Rescue Squad served as host for the Fifth District drill, and was the first to respond to the Carrier disaster call.
Other area rescue squads responding to the call were Princeton, Branchburg, Hillsborough. Green Knolls. Man ville. Raritan, Finderne. Martinsville and Franklin (Somerset).
Thirty volunteers, comprised of Carrier staff members and community residents, played the roles of the “victims” during the drill. Prior to the drill, the volunteers were made up to appear as though they had suffered injuries with the use of bandages, artificial blood and makeup.
The disaster was called at 6:15 p.m. and the drill terminated at 9 p.m.
According to the Carrier Disaster Drill Committee, no plans have been established for next year’s drill, which can occur anytime in 1984.