With the Guardian Safety and Survival Training System Simulator ready for shipment overseas, PPES held a VIP demonstration on Tuesday, September 9, 2014, at the company’s new manufacturing facility in Atglen, PA. The disaster simulator, scheduled to depart for the Republic of Indonesia on October 1, is the company’s first unit manufactured specifically for foreign delivery.
Visitors to the new facility included Don Konkle, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Fire & Emergency Services Institute; Edward Mann, Pennsylvania State Fire Commissioner; Mitch Vidovich, Director, Southeast Pennsylvania Region for U.S. Senator Patrick Toomey; and Congressman Jim Gerlach, Pennsylvania State Representative of the 6th District.
Purchased by Indonesia’s National Board of Disaster Management (BNPB), analogous to the USA’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Guardian will be used to provide ongoing confined-space training by recreating hundreds of disaster scenarios that first responders are likely to encounter during rescue operations in a collapsed building.
Also in attendance were some of the people who helped develop and construct the new unit including the developer of the Guardian and president of PPES, Tom Quinn, whose experience at Ground Zero following the 9/11 attacks became the inspiration for the collapsed building simulator.
The Guardian allows first responders to master such necessary techniques as cutting through rebar, stabilizing collapsed environments, cribbing, jacking, breaching, shoring up flooring and extricating victims – all while hindered by dust, smoke and total darkness. Equipped to reflect local conditions typical in the island nation, the Indonesian unit is able to realistically replicate sudden aftershocks that often follow a powerful earthquake.
Other advancements include a redesigned command center that allows continuous monitoring and recording of a training exercise, expanded audio effects system that fills the training simulator not only with the internal sounds rescuers would hear within a collapsed building, but also outside distractions that are common at a disaster, specially designed LED escape lighting, and additional escape and entry doors among other improvements. BNPB also elected to include the sewer-line rescue package, window repelling/rescue kit and leaking gas-line simulator.
U.S. Senator Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania issued a statement: “I congratulate PPES on their innovative Guardian Safety and Survival Training System Simulator that is helping to make it easier to train our first responders. It is great to see a Chester County, PA, manufacturer leading this charge.”
Members of the press can preview the unit prior to its departure to Baltimore on September 26 by contacting Jay Gundel & Associates at (302) 658-1674. More information is available on the PPES website (www.PPES.us). Photos and video footage are available by request.