JACKSONVILLE, N.C (WNCT) – Albert J. Ellis Airport will hold its triennial emergency response exercise on Saturday morning, to test the Airport’s Emergency Plan and provide an opportunity for emergency responders to hone their skills as they relate to aircraft incidents.

Area residents and airline passengers may notice numerous emergency vehicles in the area as well as simulations including smoke, however, should not be concerned.

“Exercises such as these are invaluable tools designed to prepare responders for the unlikely event of an aircraft accident. Preparation is key to a timely and effective response,” said Chris White, Albert J. Ellis’ airport director.

In addition to annual plan reviews and tabletop exercises, the FAA requires that all commercial service airports test their response to an aircraft emergency in a full-scale drill every three years. Albert J. Ellis is staffed by professional firefighters and police, uniquely equipped to respond to aircraft emergencies.

In addition, the Airport receives valuable support from mutual aid agencies. Responders from the Airport’s Police and Fire Departments, Onslow County’s Emergency Services, Sheriff’s Office, Back Swamp VFD, Nine Mile VFD, Richlands VFD, Rhodestown VFD, NCHP, NCEM, Fountaintown VFD, Red Cross, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and others will be participating in Saturday’s exercise.

Due to safety concerns, the exercise is only open to designated responders and not the general public. For more information, please contact the Albert J. Ellis Airport at 910-324-1100.