MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WNCT) – Preparation and training is key for first responders to be ready for any situation.

Out in Morehead City, their fire and emergency medical services are teaming up with East Care on a helicopter exercise.

These past few days, first responders are focusing on better understanding helicopter ins and outs to help prepare for a crisis situation.

When duty calls, emergency workers on the ground need to know how to respond.

“How do we communicate with the medical helicopter? How do we set up the landing zone? How is it going to be safe? How are we going to know when we need to call for East Care?” said Chuck Strickland, the Outreach Coordinator for East Care.

This course focuses on the safety procedures and communication between EMS and the airlift team.

“The whole purpose was to practice when it’s not an emergency situation so that if there are any things that we need to work on to improve, we have the opportunity to do that,” said Strickland.

As well as allowing them to see and understand how to assist.

“It gives them the ability to see the aircraft up close, and to learn the safety features, the shutdown features, and learn the protocols of the flight crew,” said Courtney Wade, Fire and EMS Chief for Morehead City.

There are 5 East Care helicopters that cover 29 counties throughout the state.

Many of the Morehead City first responders are familiar with the routine…

“However, we do have some new employees that this is your first time,” said Wade.

But officials add it’s always good to have a refresher and work on improving for the future.

“We want to be there for those who need us, and we want to be there in a timely fashion,” said Strickland.

The plan is to continue the helicopter training each year from now on.