Are we prepared in the face of an emergency? - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Are we prepared in the face of an emergency?

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Just three days after a violent bomb explosion happened at the Boston Marathon, Monday, the nation learned of another tragic catastrophe. On Wednesday night, a violent explosion at a fertilizing plant in Texas killed several and injured dozens.

Though one is suspected to be a plotted act of violence and the other possibly an accident, emergency response and security is on everyone's mind.

59 News started to wonder with the countless number of events coming to our area, are local emergency responders ready for any catastrophe to strike the mountain state?

One event just a few months away is the national Boy Scouts of American Jamboree.

Tens of thousands are expected to flock to Fayette County in July for the big celebration.

59 News wanted to know how emergency planners are preparing to handle the massive crowds and keep everyone safe.

59 News caught up with Fayette County Director of Emergency Management Shawn Wolford and asked, are we ready?

"I think we are.  We are getting there we are," Wolford said.  He explained, "you can never be prepared for every event, we learned that from Boston.  But it won't be for a lack of planning or trying that we won't be prepared."

Director of Emergency Management Shawn Wolford has been preparing for the Boy Scout National Jamboree for months. He said meetings occur biweekly and ever meeting at the top of the agenda is safety and security. Wolford explained not one agency is all alone in this.  There are going to be many agencies to help at the Jamboree.   He said this includes emergency officials from the state and federal level.  He said all of these agencies are going through extensive training before July to make sure safety is the top priority.

59 News wanted to know what security will be like during the Jamboree.  Wolford explained, "the summit itself will be an area you will have to have the proper credentials to enter. If you don't have a reason to be there you will be escorted off very quickly. But, there will be private and public security there, with the Boy Scout's and law enforcement officials and traffic detail and National Guard to assist with all of that."

Wolford said another part included in planning is the community at large.  He said the organizers and safety staff must also plan for the daily emergencies that happen within the county.  He said fires, crime and injuries will continue to happen within Fayette County and emergency response will not be put on hold due to the Jamboree.  He explained this is one of the reasons why so many agencies will be involved.

Taking the Boy Scout motto to heart, emergency officials plan to "always be prepared." But Wolford said no matter how detailed your plan is, emergencies can happen.

"It has been said plan for the worst hope for the best," Wolford said.

To learn more about the National Boy Scout Jamboree click here.