News Flash


Posted on: September 6, 2023

Bellingham International Airport to Conduct Emergency Response Drill

The Bellingham International Airport (BLI) Triennial Full-Scale Emergency Exercise will take place this Friday, September 8, 2023, between 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. east of the Runway 16/34. People traveling along Airport Way, Airport Drive and Mitchell Way during this time will see emergency vehicles responding to the airfield area northeast of the airport. 

The purpose of the exercise is to give the airport, mutual aid partners and emergency responders the opportunity to train for a real aircraft emergency in a safe and controlled environment. This live exercise will be conducted in compliance with Federal Aviation Administration requirements.

Agencies participating in this year’s drill include:

  • Port of Bellingham 
  • Bellingham Fire Department 
  • Whatcom County Sheriff’s Department
  • Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management
  • Whatcom Community Emergency Response Team
  • Whatcom Transportation Authority
  • American Red Cross
  • PeaceHealth - St. Joseph Medical Center Hospital 
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Volunteer Mobilization Center
  • Local community members role-playing emergency “victim” volunteers

BLI is required to maintain an Airport Emergency Plan. This plan outlines the response procedures for Airport personnel and mutual aid partners that must effectively respond to and manage emergencies that occur on Airport property. Federal law requires that this plan be tested with a mock full-scale aircraft emergency every thirty-six consecutive calendar months.  

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