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In September 2010 Tufts University was awarded the Emergency Management in Higher Education grant from the U.S. Department of Education, and has been working to increase awareness, training, planning, and resilience. A central theme of the grant program is to enhance collaboration between the university, localities, and the state, building upon the strong relationships we already enjoy.  Since September 2010, Tufts University has conducted a number of exercises along with tests of response and evacuation procedures.

With the grant program nearing its end, our design culminates in a joint full-scale exercise to test our ability to manage a multi-disciplinary, multi-jurisdictional, complex incident in cooperation with our response partners. Named Operation “Collective Aegis”, this exercise is designed to establish a learning environment for players to exercise emergency response plans, policies, and procedures. An incident that crosses jurisdictional and disciplinary boundaries is complex and requires detailed planning. To ensure an effective exercise, subject matter experts and local representatives from numerous agencies have taken part in the planning process and will take part in exercise conduct and evaluation. This exercise is evidence of the growing public safety partnership between private entities and jurisdictions regarding the response to the threat of complex incidents that we face.

On Tuesday, June 4th, Tufts University Department of Public and Environmental Safety will conduct an emergency preparedness training exercise with Medford Police, Medford Fire, Armstrong Ambulance, Somerville Police, Somerville Fire, Cataldo Ambulance, Cambridge Health Alliance Somerville Hospital campus, and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency. The exercise will take place in the area of Pearson Chemical Laboratory and Michael Laboratory. Starting at 8 AM you may see police vehicles, ambulances, and fire engines on campus. You may also see ambulances taking volunteers posing as patients to Somerville Hospital. All activities will be simulated.  Emergency vehicles taking part in the training will not use lights or sirens.  No actual hazards or chemicals are being used. There will not be any simulated gunfire or explosions. The exercise is scheduled to end at noon, but emergency vehicles will be on campus into the afternoon while participants review the exercise. Some streets and parking areas on campus, highlighted with blue in the map below, will be closed.

View “Collective Aegis” Traffic Restrictions in a larger map