Assoc. News Editor
Preparedness in the face of an emergency or disaster is a highly regarded issue on college and university campuses. Millersville University recently improved student security in the wake of an unfortunate incident with the purchase of a Mobile Command Vehicle (MCV). During a disaster, the MCV will be able to communicate with other disaster vehicles, provide emergency equipment, and manage a disaster until the situation is controlled. The MCV is designed to respond quickly during an incident in the Millersville and Lancaster areas.
“The vehicle was purchased from the Blue Rock Fire Department for $1,”said Patrick Weidinger, Director of Environmental Health and Safety at MU. The vehicle then underwent a 25,000 dollar upgrade with funds from Millersville University. The upgrades include large white boards, chairs, interior lighting, three work stations with laptop computers, radios, and mobile hot spot technology. The MCV is housed at Lebanon House with University Police, where the Incident Command Team can easily mobilize the vehicle for human and non-human disasters. The Incident Command Team consists of three members including Weidinger, Public Information Officer Janet Kacskos, and Incident Commander Chief Pete Anders. Other staff members will also be called to assist in a disaster situation. The vehicle will be maneuverable during a disaster to provide shelter for the Incident Command Team and assist with emergency aid. Emergency aid equipment is housed in a Special Operations Trailer that is attached to the vehicle.
The MCV at Millersville is one of two emergency command vehicles for PASSHE universities. Kutztown is the only other PASHHE university with an updated Emergency Vehicle. The unit is one of two completely outfitted emergency response command centers for the PASSHE universities.
The vehicles special modifications allow it to be versatile in situations other than a disaster, “such as commencement, homecoming, football or basketball games, and other large planned events,” said Weidinger. The MVC can be used for non-disaster events, but the vehicles quick mobilization and emergency equipment is crucial for assisting in a disaster situation.