For more than 20 years emergency preparedness exercises have been held in and around the Blue Grass Army Depot.
Wednesday’s drill comes as officials continue to ramp up for demilitarization of chemical weapons stored in Madison County.
After decades of discussion, funding, and plant construction, neutralization of nerve agent is scheduled to begin in early 2020. Karen Nichol, with the Army Chemical Materials Activity in Maryland, was positioned at the mock decontamination site in Lexington.
With the actual demilitarization process just over two years away, Nichol says citizen interest in preparedness may increase.
“If that’s a good reason to get more people to think about it, we’ll take it. It’s a constant state of preparedness though. You don’t have to be more prepared now,” said Nichol. “It’s not more dangerous when they’re destroying the stockpile.”
Emergency response officials in ten counties participated in the annual exercise. In addition to GB and VX nerve agent, mustard munitions will also be destroyed.