Emergency vehicles by the score roared out into the Sai Kung country park at 9am today scaring some residents. It was just a drill.
Firemen Michael Yeung gave BUZZ a pamphlet explaining what it was all about. The imagined scenario: 25 hikers were endangered by a hill fire that had broken out near the West Dam.
Fire tenders, ambulances, motorcycle officers, police vans and vehicles of Civil Aid Services and Auxiliary Medical Services all raced out there. Nobody was obeying the speed limit — why would you in an emergency? Hikers, runners, amahs and dogs stood back nervously. Helicopters had been called in to water-bomb and rescue people drowning.
Staged from the bus park at Pak Tam Chung, it was a comprehensive inter-departmental exercise. Fire Services, AFCD and CAS practiced hill fire fighting, CAS rescued casualties at high level, the Police searched for the missing, AMS and ambulancemen treated the injured, gave them triage and despatched them to hospital.
It looked like the men and women were having fun, but the practice is serious: no-one who was here at the time will forget the Pat Sin Leng school children hill fire tragedy.