FLORENCE — A North Alabama Medical Center drill is planned today involving a Florence City Schools bus and people posing as victims.

Authorities are putting out the word about this drill so the public knows it is a mock exercise rather than a real emergency and not become alarmed if they see the bus involved.

The safety exercise takes place at the Florence-Lauderdale Coliseum and the medical center, as an exercise to evaluate first responders and treatment procedures at the hospital in the event a major incident occurs, authorities said.

"We're feeding patients in at a high rate to the emergency room," said George Grabryan, director of the Lauderdale County Emergency Management Agency.

Grabryan said police, firefighters and ambulance drivers are included in the drill, so the public should expect to see them in the area of the coliseum and medical center, likely with emergency lights going.

The coliseum and hospital both are on Veterans Drive in east Florence.

Florence City Schools sent an advisory Tuesday to let the media and public know about the drill.

The advisory pointed out the school system is providing a school bus for the simulation but no city schools students will be involved in the exercise.

"We feel it is important to notify the media and most importantly our stakeholders that this is only a safety exercise, and to reiterate no students of Florence City Schools will be involved," the advisory stated.

bernie.delinski@timesdaily.com or 256-740-5739. Twitter @TD_BDelinski

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