First responders prepare for "worst case scenario"

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – The government shutdown isn't affecting local fire departments.

Firefighters from Lexington, along with seven other departments, took part in a search and rescue operation Monday.

The sound of generators and drills filled the air, as firefighters from around the state joined forces in an urban search and rescue drill.

Lexington's Special Operations Battalion Chief, Gregg Bayer, says in these situations it's better to prepare ahead of time than to get "on the job" training.

"To do, just on time training, take a core group of people, it's basically a recipe for disaster," said Bayer.

The tragedy in West Liberty, KY, in which 6 people were killed after tornadoes hit in March 2012, is a reminder to search and rescue crews of why training is necessary.

"Seeing the destruction, of what that can do, we simply applied the principles that we learn here," he said. "The command control, the logistics, the rescue, the search component, the Hazmat and medical component."

Chief Bayer says it's his hope Kentucky will pass legislation to create a statewide urban search and rescue team so things can be even more streamlined and efficient.

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