Studying the evacuation zone map around the reactors
CARMEL – It was only a drill, but for eight hours Tuesday more than 100 volunteers and employees of Putnam County participated in a disaster exercise relating to an emergency response at the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Buchanan.
Putnam joined its neighbors in Westchester, Orange and Rockland counties for the drill that was monitored by both officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the State Office of Emergency Management.
The scenario centered on an explosion at the plant and release of radiation that headed north towards Putnam.
At the county’s Emergency Operations Center in Carmel, representatives of law enforcement, education, public health, utilities, Office for Senior Resources, fire and EMS charted an evacuation plan for the Philipstown-Putnam Valley area with residents of the 10-mile radius of Indian Point affected. While no real evacuations occurred, on paper residents living in sections of southern Philipstown, Continental Village, lower Garrison and Putnam Valley were “safely removed.”
The exercise also practiced for the safe evacuations of children attending schools in the affected areas.
Putnam County Commissioner of Emergency Services Ken Clair, Acting County Executive Paul Eldridge and Putnam’s Director of Informational Technology and Geographical Information Systems Thomas Lannon were in command of the drill in Putnam County.
Clair said the county was looking forward to receiving the evaluations from both federal and state monitors: “It’s important that we plan and practice just in case the unthinkable ever occurs. In Putnam County, we are prepared.”