Pittsburgh officials say downtown evac plan needs work after bomb scare
| 06.05.2007 | 07:41:07 | Views: 2559 | ID:
June 5 '07: Existing plans to evacuate downtown Pittsburgh in the event of a large-scale disaster are untested and inadequate, city officials told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Ray DeMichiei, the deputy director of the city's emergency management agency said, "We did a few things to the plans post-9/11, but we still aren't satisfied." DeMichiei's comments came a day after a bomb scare closed three tunnels into the city, halting traffic for hours, the Tribune-Review reported.
As the investigation into the identity of the caller who set of the bomb scare is underway, officials in Pittsburgh said they are working to revamp the downtown evacuation plans. DeMichiei said, "We have done some small-scale events where we've closed off roads, set up perimeters and evacuated people. ... But have we evacuated the whole town? No."According to the Tribune-Review, "If the bomb threat had been real, political, fire and law enforcement officials would have assembled in the city's Emergency Operations Center. ... They would have decided how to evacuate tens of thousands of people - whether via mass transit, in personal vehicles or both - then determined the best routes," for the more than 130,000 daily commuters into the city. State Police spokeswoman and Trooper Robin Mungo told the paper, "In most cases, you have to go over a bridge or through a tunnel (to enter or exit Downtown). ... It's something authorities need to sit down and look at. Logistically, trying to evacuate the city - I don't know how well that would go over."
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