One of the worse variants of the railway accident in the middle of the Ejpovice tunnel and the difficult conditions tested the components of the integrated rescue system during a tactical exercise. This took place late on Saturday evening and the theme was inspired by a real train accident in the Gotthard Tunnel in Switzerland that happened on August 10th this year.
A real train accident in the Gotthard Tunnel was the subject of a night training session near Pilsen
| Photo: Photo: HZS PK
During the passage of the passenger train through the Ejpovice tunnel, a technical fault occurred on the chassis of the first wagon. The train derailed with one hundred and thirty passengers and dozens of injuries, some serious. In a simulated accident firefighters, paramedics and the police intervened. “The place of the accident and the time were chosen deliberately. On the one hand, with regard to traffic in the tunnel and also because the exercise is carried out under difficult conditions, in this case night time and the position of the train in the furthest position from the individual portals, better simulates one of the worse variants of the intervention that could occur,” said the regional spokesperson firemen Petr Poncar.
23 fire protection units were dispatched to the scene. This corresponds to more than a hundred trainee firefighters. The largest number of responding units was gathered at the Homolka portal (Ejpovice) and from there the firefighters entered the free northern tube of the tunnel. After finding out the location of the crashed train through research, they started rescue work. They evacuated uninjured people through the safety jumpers between the tubes, sorted the injured according to the severity of their injuries and then transported them to the Chlum portal (Pilsen), where they handed them over to the medical rescue service.
“At the same time as this activity, a survey of the tubes was also carried out with the aim of finding out whether there are any persons who left the train set before the arrival of the units. During the intervention, the intervention commander’s staff was set up, which, among other things, used live transmission from the cameras that are part of the tunnel’s security system to support the decision-making process,” added the fire brigade spokesman.
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Cars for dealing with mass casualty events and a number of rescue vehicles were also on the scene. “Regional paramedics thank the Medical Rescue Service of the Central Bohemian Region for their cooperation, which helped our paramedics by sending two teams from the bases in Hořovice and Beroun,” said Andrea Divišová on behalf of the paramedics. Observers from the rescue services of the Moravian-Silesian and Liberec regions were also present. “The personnel-reinforced medical operations center, together with medical rescuers, also tested the use of the new application for registering victims and e-Evacuation, which will be used by all components of the IZS and participating medical facilities.”
AND for police officers is to participate in such an exercise a very valuable and important experience. “It is an opportunity where we can test the coordination of activities and procedures not only between police units, but also with other units of the integrated rescue system of the Pilsen region,” stated police spokeswoman Pavla Burešová, stating that the task of the police in the event of such an event would be to ensure public order or directing traffic and helping with sorting out the injured and providing first aid, including psychological help, etc. only after identification of the persons traveling on the train.
As she further described, as soon as it would be possible to enter the tube of the tunnel itself in the event of a real accident, a whole series of important actions would begin for the police: securing tracks, photo documentation, securing things, inspecting the scene of the event, up to the statement of persons, etc., i.e. actions important for the police themselves criminal proceedings.