Simulation of an MCI

I attended a Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) drill last weekend hosted by Lakewood Emergency Medical Services. Drill is the word to take notice of, a simulated event. An exercise of preparation and preparedness. Not Real. The photographs from this event may be disturbing to you. Do not like? Do not look.

Thanks, needed to get that out of the way. Enough said.

I have been involved in EMS for almost 20 years. 18 of those have been as a Paramedic so I am usually on the other side of the lens and involved in these drills as a participant rather than as a photographer. Drills like these can never truly prepare you for the real thing, the adrenaline level just does not compare, but they are incredibly important as an educational tool for all those involved. There is something for everyone to learn, from the administrators down to the providers. Even the simulated patients can take away a piece of knowledge or understanding they may have not previously had, they also provide a great source of critique.

The scenario for the day was a backpack bomb that had been detonated at a local school. There were makeup artists on hand to provide a real life look to the “victims” and they did a fantastic job giving a very Walking Dead feeling to the morning. I still do not get the popularity of that show…

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And a couple of the close ups,

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My daughter and a few of her friends were “victims”, they came out relatively unscathed for the most part.

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And I even got a little smirk from one


The most compelling and probably the most disturbing capture of the morning to me and one that struck a nerve

LEMS_Drill_pShepherd-57I tell myself if this was real, for one thing I would not be capturing the event, her leg probably would not be pulled up as it is. This is the one image I was very hesitant in posting. But it is just a drill now isn’t it….Onwards..

Five agencies participated in the drill which included paid and volunteer organizations, resources were taxed, distractions were thrown in for the responder’s to deal with including a “head injured mother stealing ambulance to look for her daughter”. I thought that was a great idea. Planning these drills takes a tremendous amount of effort and coordination as well as a willingness to use it for what it is intended.

“Critical” patients being prepped for transport

LEMS_Drill_pShepherd-126For the look of intensity in the responder’s faces this next image hit the spot.

LEMS_Drill_pShepherd-106 My apologies to those that may have been offended by this post, but this is part of the reality we live in. It is necessary for Public Safety Personnel to have a better understanding of the events and actions they may encounter and simulated drills are part of our workflow. Be safe and stay safe.

Thanks for stopping by! Till next time…

Published by Phil Shepherd

Capturing my interpretation of this world and its inhabitants... I am a Headshot and Portrait Photographer and supporter of Live, Local Music. This offering is dedicated mainly to Mom Nature and the travels I indulge in with her.

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