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Clow Social Science Center, 805 Algoma Blvd.

The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, the City of Oshkosh and Winnebago County will conduct a full-scale emergency response exercise Thursday, Aug. 12, 2010.

The field portion of the exercise will be focused in and around Clow Social Science Center (805 Algoma Blvd.) on the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campus. Other facilities being used include Reeve Memorial Union (748 Algoma Blvd.), Radford Hall – Student Health (777 Algoma Blvd.), parking lots around Clow and additional emergency operations centers operating at several off-campus locations. Officials leading the exercise would appreciate if individuals would avoid the area surrounding the Clow classrooms.

Road closures will include Algoma Boulevard at Woodland Avenue to Osceola Street, High Street at Woodland Avenue to Osceola Street, and Osceola Street at Pearl Avenue. Closures will run from 8 – 11:30 a.m.

The exits for parking lots that empty onto High Street or Algoma Boulevard will be blocked until 11:30 a.m. In the event of an emergency need to leave those parking lots, contact University Police at 424-1212.

The exercise will involve emergency personnel and vehicles from local law enforcement agencies, including the University Police. Set-up for the exercise will begin at 6 a.m. and the exercise is scheduled to end by 12:30 p.m.

More than 300 participants, including local and county law enforcement officers, firefighters, EMS personnel, hospital staff and volunteer “victim” actors, will participate. The full-scale exercise will offer UW Oshkosh, first response agencies and local jurisdictions the means to test their skills in real-time, to gain the in-depth knowledge that only this type of realistic experience can provide and to build coordinated capacity for incident response.

Agencies participating in the exercise include the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh (including Police, Administration and Counseling), Winnebago County (including Emergency Management, Sheriff’s Department/Dispatch and Public Information), Oshkosh Fire/EMS and Police Departments, Neenah Police Department, Menasha Police Department, Appleton Police Department,  Mercy Medical Center, Aurora Hospital and the American Red Cross.

The drill will involve a high degree of realism, including actors posing as “victims” who may appear to be injured. Members of the community traveling in the area may see police officers with weapons drawn and hear gunshots; this activity will be clustered in and immediately outside of Clow only. Reeve and Radford will be used only by volunteer “victim” actors.

Be aware that all weapons will be thoroughly checked by trained exercise safety officers and will only fire “simunition” training rounds. These rounds sound like gunfire but do not project a bullet only a tiny, colored soap pellet. Be assured that all registered exercise participants will be provided eye protection and all other safety gear required for their level of activity but that it is critical that other people not associated with the exercise stay away from the area.

Signs will be posted explaining that the activity is only an exercise and participants will be clearly indicated.