MEDINA, Ohio, Sept. 23, 2014 —  Recognizing the importance of preparedness and strong communication in the event of disaster, AT&T* and its Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) organization have joined the Medina County Emergency Management Agency/Local Emergency Planning Committee and other local public safety organizations to conduct a hazardous materials functional exercise in Medina County. The exercise, involving the following fire, law, EMS, support and private organizations, allows participants to train together in preparation for real-life local hazmat emergencies:

County and Regional Partners

Medina County Emergency Management Agency

Medina County Hazmat Team

Medina County Technical Rescue Team

Medina County Sheriff’s Department

Medina Twp. Fire Department

Medina Twp. Police Department

Medina Fire Department

Granger Twp. Fire Department

Hinckley Twp. Fire Department

Erhart Fire Department

Brunswick Hills Twp. Fire Department

Sharon Twp. Fire Department

Medina Life Support Team

Southwest Emergency Response Team

Summit County Hazmat Team

Medina County Incident Management Assistance Team






Private Partner

AT&T Network Disaster Recovery


Medina County Government Support Agencies

Medina County Commissioners

Local Emergency Planning Committee

Medina County Executive Board

Medina County Sanitary Engineers


Medina County Support Agencies

Medina County Amateur Radio Service

Community Emergency Response Team


State and Federal Agencies

Ohio Search and Rescue Team

Ohio Emergency Management Agency

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency

Federal Bureau of Investigation


The exercise simulates an underground explosion with trapped workers. Participants, utilizing full personal protective equipment designed for a hazmat incident, will be required to enter into a live smoke training environment. Emergency responders will perform drills that will test the county emergency response plan. The complexity of the drill will require rescue personnel to recognize and identify hazardous substances, and implement a response plan, as well as evaluate the environmental impact and resident protection.

The Medina County Emergency Management Agency exercises are one component in a week filled with AT&T NDR activities with Northeast Ohio public sector safety organizations. Additional training sessions are being conducted with the Solon Fire Department, Chagrin South East Regional Hazmat Team, and the Cleveland Fire Department. AT&T NDR will deploy four pieces of equipment to support its portion of the exercises:  a large hazmat equipment and command trailer, an all-hazards decon trailer, an SCBA air compressor trailer, and a mobile command center.

“By performing these exercises together, the Medina County EMA, local responders, and AT&T NDR are able to create a general state of readiness in Northeast Ohio. This preparation is valuable for large-scale public functions like professional sports games or political events where communication is critical, should an emergency arise,” said Hinckley Fire Chief Tim Potts, who is serving as Public Information Officer for the cooperative exercise in Medina County.

“We are incredibly fortunate to have an imperative national resource like this available to us locally in Medina to partner with local emergency management agencies on disaster response exercises so we can all be ready as emergencies or large scale events arise,” said Adam Grzybicki, president, AT&T Ohio. “We have invested more than $1.6 billion in our wireless and wired networks in Ohio between 2011 through 2013, so our network is prepared for practice exercises and real life emergencies.” 

The exercise will focus on:

  • On-site incident command
  • Multi-agency coordination and communications between public and private entities
  • Techniques on working in areas that have been contaminated by hazardous materials
  • Rescue of victims from below ground facilities

WHAT: AT&T and Medina County Joint Hazmat Exercise – performing drills to ensure seamless communications and best practices for real-life hazmat situations.

WHEN: Media Visits — September 23, 2014; 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.

WHERE: 3833 Weymouth Rd. Medina, Ohio 44256

VISUALS: Trained hazmat teams with AT&T NDR, Medina County Hazmat and other various Medina County fire, law, EMS, support and regional emergency response organizations conducting an exercise to prepare for possible hazmat situations.

Medina County has built an All-Hazards Team to include a technical rescue team and a Type II Hazardous Materials Team capable of regional response in the state of Ohio. Fire Departments participating in the exercise such as Medina Twp., Medina City, Erhart, Brunswick Hills Twp., Sharon Twp., Hinckley Twp., Granger Twp., and the Medina Life Support Team help make up the manpower that has built the 40+ team members capable of responding to Confined Space, Trench Rescue, Rope Rescue, Structural Collapse, and Hazardous Materials Incidents. Recent Technical Rescue Team responses include the June 23rd tornado in Brunswick. The Hazardous Material Team has responded to 5 incidents this year in various jurisdictions.

Christina Fozio, the Medina County EMA Director states, “Collaboration and partnerships are the key to mitigating any event. When you practice as you would respond, it allows us all to understand our roles and how we can support each other to protect the communities which we serve. What a great display of public/private partnership we have with all who are involved.”

In its two decades of service, the AT&T NDR team has been deployed more than 70 times – including recent deployments for Hurricanes Sandy in 2012 and Irene in 2011. The NDR team deployed on September 11, 2001, following the New York City World Trade Center disaster – recovering the services of a destroyed network office and providing emergency communications support for humanitarian efforts.

“We are conducting this exercise in Medina, in part, to help local and regional first responders understand how NDR would handle a hazmat situation in its efforts to restore communications for an area impacted by a disaster,” said Mark Francis, VP, Network Operations.

For more Medina County EMA/All Hazards Team information visit

For more information about the AT&T NDR team, visit the AT&T Network Disaster Recovery page.

*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

About AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company and one of the most honored companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and internationally. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile Internet, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide of any U.S. carrier, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries.  It also offers advanced TV service with the AT&T U-verse® brand. The company’s suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world.  Reliability claim based on third party data regarding nationwide carriers’ 4G LTE.

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