Jenks Schools Practice Tornado Safety During Drill
JENKS, Oklahoma - This week's weather is proof of just how important it is to have storm preparedness plan. Some area schools decided to put their plans to the test Tuesday.
Hundreds of students from Jenks schools and almost thirty agencies participated in a drill to test the district's tornado plan.
A massive tornado just hit Jenks Middle School. The power is out, cell phone service is down and kids are hurt.
"It would be good to know if a real one happens," 8th grader James MacLeod said. "It would be pretty scary."
Jenks Public Schools has a tornado plan and ran a full-scale exercise to make sure the kids, school staff and emergency responders could carry it out if this was the real deal.
"It creates a picture in your mind of what you would see if it was real, so you can be like, wow," 8th grader Ameen Bunch said.
Firefighters evacuate students who aren't hurt and medical teams triage the injured.
"This is going to be more of a medical exercise than it is a police exercise at this point, but I think it's going really well," said Assistant Chief Perry Marler with the Jenks Public Schools Police. "The kids are acting really well."
School officials set up a command post to coordinate resources, evaluate the scene and relay information to everyone involved.
The district says communication between the school district, law enforcement and first responders is crucial in a crisis, like a tornado.
"We know how close to home it hit us in Joplin or in Oklahoma City, so it's just a matter of time before it probably does hit the Tulsa area," Marler said.
Becky Kiner is a Jenks Middle School teacher and parent to a 7th grader.
"I thought it was very realistic because it is chaotic when stuff like that happens and you have everything going on, but I think they handled it very well," Kiner said.
As much as the district tried to simulate a disaster, they know the real thing would be even worse.
The last phase of the plan was family reunification, where parents go to a designated location to pick up their kids in an emergency.
All the agencies that participated will meet again May 15th to talk about what worked and what they can work on.