NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — As public safety concerns continue to be voiced in Tennessee, local schools, businesses and transportation agencies are reviewing their emergency response procedures.
On Wednesday, April 12, WeGo Star ran a mock disaster drill at the Hermitage Train Station on Andrew Jackson Parkway in Nashville.
The drill dealt with mass casualty incidents and reviewed how staff and first responders should react to keep people safe, provide medical services, and preserve evidence in case of a criminal investigation.
These mass casualty, emergency incidents could be caused by a variety of factors.
Data from the Federal Railroad Administration shows human error is the number one cause of rail accidents both nationwide and in Tennessee.
In 2021, there were about 8,100 rail accidents nationally, according to the administration —166 of those were in Tennessee.
The data states accidents caused by human error are followed by track issues and other miscellaneous issues.
The Railroad Administration notes in 2021, there were 23 train derailments in Tennessee. They report no one was killed or injured, but it cost about $4 million in damages.
WeGo Public Transit said these drills are done every two years. All of the passengers on board in the mock disaster drill are volunteer participants.
To avoid creating concern, WeGo notified nearby neighbors and schools that there would be an increased first responder presence in the area.
“In light of everything we’ve been going through lately, it’s just so important to let folks know that this is the kind of thing to help keep people safe,” said Eric Melcher, public information officer for WeGo Public Transit.