LARGE FULL-SCALE RESPONSE EXERCISE PLANNED FOR AUGUST 26TH RANIER – INTERNATIONAL FALLS, MN & FT. FRANCES, ON

LARGE FULL-SCALE RESPONSE EXERCISE PLANNED FOR AUGUST 26TH RANIER – INTERNATIONAL FALLS, MN & FT. FRANCES, ON

August 19, 2021 News -- KSDM-KGHS Project Radio Outreach 0

August 18, 2021
Rainy River International Emergency Response Exercise
The Koochiching County Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Management is sponsoring a multi agency international full-scale exercise set for Thursday, Aug. 26. This exercise will provide participants with an opportunity to test response capabilities plans, policies, procedures and training. It will focus on decision-making, coordination, and integration of resources with other jurisdictions and organizations during a simulated train derailment and hazardous materials spill on the river. The expected outcome of the exercise is to test and strengthen interagency response, communication, and coordination. The exercise is being designed and delivered by Paramount Planning, a public safety consulting firm out of Grand Rapids, Minn. with assistance from a local exercise design team of first responders. This will be the first ever response exercise of this scale along the international border area and has been a tremendous show of cross-border partnership and collaboration.
Scenario
The base scenario for the exercise will center on a train derailment on the Ranier Rail Bridge between Fort Frances, Ontario and Ranier, Minn, with a hazardous materials release on the river and nearby ground. Agencies will then conduct large-scale response operations, evacuation and sheltering procedures, as well as medial and environmental protection activities. Local media and actors will be involved to help simulate real-world response actions by the public. Dispatch will also test mass notification systems between countries and push out a live public alert to all local cell phones, radio and TV stations when the exercise starts begins.
Participants
More than 25 separate agencies are expected to participate in the exercise, with additional staff assistance from local, regional, and state partners. Over 150 total participants are expected on Aug. 26.
The following agencies and organizations are identified as key players (alphabetized):
Press Release International Falls, MN Koochiching County Sheriff’s Office 8.18.2021 For Immediate Release


• American Red Cross
• Canadian National Railway
• City of Fort Frances (Ontario) – Fire, EMS, Public Works
• City of Ranier
• Environment Canada
• International Falls — Police, Fire, EMS, Public Works
• Koochiching County Human Services – Public Health
• Koochiching County Sheriff’s Office – Emergency Management
• Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
• Minnesota Department of Public Safety division of Emergency Communications Network (ECN)
• Minnesota Department of Public Safety – Fire Marshal’s Office
• Minnesota Department of Public Safety division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM)
• Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
• North Memorial Air Care
• Packaging Corporation of America (PCA)
• Province of Ontario
• Rainy Lake Medical Center
• US Border Patrol
• US Customs and Border Protection
• US Environmental Protection Agency
• US National Park Service


Contact Information
For more information on this release, please contact:
Willi Kostiuk
Koochiching County Emergency Manager
Cell: 218-341-0062
Email: willi.kostiuk@co.koochiching.mn.us
or
Blain Johnson
Exercise Designer and Director
Paramount Planning
Cell: 701-429-1737
Email: blain.johnson@paramountplanning.net