For the second year, the Municipality of Meaford will be hosting part of the Canadian Armed Forces Ardent Defender Exercise in partnership with the 4th Canadian Division Training Centre and local emergency service organizations.
The Ardent Defender exercise is a counter-explosive threat training scenario. It is the largest exercise of its kind to take place in Canada, and will include participants from over 20 nations around the world. The aim of the exercise is to refine the skills to defeat threats that could be faced during Armed Forces operations. Meaford hosted a portion of the exercise in 2018 as well, with activities taking place at the Meaford Harbour and the Fire Hall Training Center.
While the Canadian Armed Forces will be simulating a threat scenario at the water treatment plant, Municipal staff and local partners including Grey County EMS, the Meaford Hospital, Grey County Social Services, and Town of the Blue Mountains will be testing out our Emergency Management Plan in a simulated water emergency.
“We’re required to test our emergency procedures each year, and we’re very fortunate to get to do it on a much larger scale this year,” said Meaford’s Community Emergency Management Coordinator Brittany Sheridan. “We’ll be running through our Municipal Emergency Management Plan in real-time, as well as emergency plans specific to the water treatment plant. We’ve been lucky enough not to have been through a declared emergency, but it’s essential to prepare ourselves so we can keep our community safe.”
The exercise will be taking place on October 9th at Meaford Hall and October 10th at the Meaford Water Treatment Plant. The Market Square parking lot will be restricted on October 9th, and Grandview Drive will be closed in front of the water plant for the day on October 10th.
Throughout the exercise, residents near the training areas may hear loud blasts and explosions between 6:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. Residents may also see military personnel, vehicles and equipment from the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), emergency services personnel, and soldiers from international militaries who have been invited to take part in this training event.