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A C-130 touched down at Corpus Christi International Airport as a part of an evacuation drill to prepare for severe weather. David Silva Ramirez, Wochit
The Corpus Christi International Airport saw the arrival of military aircraft and mock hurricane patients Wednesday as a part of an evacuation drill.
The drill was the result of a partnership between groups that included the airport, the Texas Air National Guard, the Texas State Guard and the Texas Military Department Patient Reception. It was intended to prepare their personnel to receive, account for, shelter and provide care to people in the event of severe weather.
The drill included regiments from Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and Corpus Christi and began with about 20 mock patients arriving on a C-130 to an airport hangar.
The hangar included greeting areas and equipment that accounts for arriving patients, as well as basic necessities, such as water, restrooms and medicine.
Texas State Guard Lt. Col. Ian Arvizo said the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in 2017 demonstrated how important evacuation processes are.
“We (Texans) went a long period of time without a really devastating hurricane, and I think people tend to get complacent when that happens,” he said. “Now that people have had a hurricane in recent memory, they’re more likely to take advantage of this.”
The Atlantic hurricane season lasts from June 1 through Sept. 30, with peak hurricane activity from mid August to late October, according to the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration.
The August 2017 landfall of Hurricane Harvey caused major flooding and structural damage in southeast Texas and left at least 103 Texans dead.
Arvizo said a real-life airlift evacuation would be primarily focused on individuals who are unable to evacuate by driving, such as hospital patients and senior citizens.
US Air Force Maj. Craig Marshall advised residents to seek out a city’s airport, police station or public transportation system in a weather emergency and should start evacuating as soon as they receive a message from an early warning system.
“The hardest part for anybody in this scenario is knowing where to go to,” he said. “And people [wait] until the next day and then guess what, you’re in five feet of water and you gotta swim, you’re carrying you’re dog and you’re baby. It’s too late then.”
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