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Stakeholders Display Highest Level Of Commitment To Protect National Asset During LTSAAS Helang Merah Exercise

Subang- Malaysia Airports successfully concluded the Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah (LTSAAS) Helang Merah Emergency Exercise that was carried out virtually with the participation of over 200 personnel from more than 66 government and private agencies. The tabletop exercise that comprised players, observers, evaluators and as well as coordinators aimed to test LTSAAS’ readiness in responding to an emergency according to the set Aerodrome Emergency Plan (AEP). The AEP contains guidelines for contingency plans outlining the key functions and responsibilities of operating units in the event of an emergency at the airport. This includes  air transport authorities, police and armed forces, health authority, and airline partners among others.
 
According to the group chief executive officer of Malaysia Airports, Dato’ Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh, “There is zero compromise to the safety standards and procedures for us at LTSAAS especially in view of its status as a National Vital Installation Priority 1 which means that it has the highest threat and impact on national security and government functions if sabotaged or destroyed, especially with the presence of major national security agencies surrounding the airport. In protecting this national asset, we always keep ourselves on high alert and are fully prepared to attend to any emergency or crisis that may occur at our network of airports. Even though we are still undergoing the Movement Control Order (MCO), we continue to ensure our readiness by anticipating and preparing for the worst case scenarios through virtual tabletop exercises with our partners and airport community. Typically during pre-COVID times, these emergency exercises were done physically on the ground. In the new norm, safety remains our top priority and the recent successful LTSAAS tabletop emergency exercise further testifies the airport’s capability in leading the exercise and unwavering support from all units involved.”
 
During the Helang Merah virtual tabletop exercise, the agencies involved were tested on their readiness, understanding, capabilities and coordination in accordance with their respective Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to deal with the given emergency scenario of an aircraft crash at LTSAAS. Among the tests include the response time taken upon being alerted of the emergency, compliance of the responders, communication channels, rescue missions in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, aircraft body removal procedures, disaster victim identification and next-of-kin management, air accident investigation process and many others.
 
Players were closely observed throughout the tabletop exercises to ensure that only the best and updated SOPs are utilised in preparation for such emergency occurrences. Strong coordination among all units is key to establish a successful emergency response plan. To date, Malaysia Airports has organised more than 300 emergency exercises at its airports nationwide, in accordance with the global standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

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