Last month in Kabul, Afghanistan, the Regional Security Office (RSO) Kabul and NATO’s Resolute Support Mission (RSM) in Afghanistan Base Defense Operations Center (BDOC) and the U.S. Embassy Kabul collaborated in a joint exercise designed to help save lives and mitigate property damage by conducting a fire and emergency support services mass casualty (MASCAL) exercise.
The RSM headquarters is host to military personnel from numerous allied and partner nations and includes a fire department and medical facility. The RSM fire and medical teams are capable organizations managed by a European contractor, and they were the U.S. Embassy’s primary fire response prior to the U.S. Embassy contracting with DynCorp International (DI) to provide fire and emergency services on the Afghanistan Life Support Services (ALiSS) contract.
“Both Resolute Support Mission and the U.S. Embassy wanted to identify gaps and/or shortfalls in the emergency response plan and prepare for future incidents at either location,” said Ken Fox, ALiSS vice president. “DI’s fire team at the U.S. Embassy joined forces with the RSM fire and medical departments to conduct drills in fire attack, search and rescue, patient transport, triage, and coordinated communications so we get experience working together and can identify areas for improvement.”
The BDOC commander complimented both departments on the MASCAL exercise process by stating, “I would never think that this was the first time the fire departments have worked together, the drill responses were so seamless. The fire departments and medical teams both demonstrated commendable action and sense of urgency.”
During the training, the DI fire team responded via fire engine to the RSM compound, deployed hose lines, made entry into the area and extinguished a simulated fire. The team then rescued three ‘personnel’ and triaged with DI and RSM medics to place them in ambulances for transport to the MASCAL center. The fire team then assisted with secondary search drills. Ventilation, salvage and overhaul were conducted prior to terminating the exercise so the fire engine is re-serviced and response ready.
“The drill and efforts by all who participated was recognized as a success by both the U.S. Embassy and NATO’s Resolute Support Mission,” added Ken Fox. “I’d like to thank the DI team for their hard work and dedication to make our community at the U.S. Embassy and Resolute Support – NATO headquarters a safer place to live.”