Multi-agency exercise tests crews response to major traffic collision

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue officers and on-call crews from Liphook, Grayshott & Alton supported a multi-agency exercise in Hindhead Tunnel during the night of Tuesday 19 March.

Hindhead tunnel exercise smoke in tunnel and crews working to release individuals trapped in vehicles


20/03/2024 4:37pm


Hampshire & Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service

The exercise was organised by National Highways to test planning and operational emergency response to a significant and challenging scenario within Hindhead tunnel.

It saw crews respond to the scenario of a substantial road traffic collision within the tunnel involving multiple vehicles and fire. With approximately 20 casualties who needed rescue, extrication, or triaging, it tested all responders and commanders in the multi-agency environment.

Hindhead 1 Hindhead exercise crews release casualty trapped in vehicle

HIWFRS Station Manager Steve Jenkins (Portsmouth, Havant & East Hampshire Group), who led arranging the HIWFRS attendance and carried out assurance said:

“The opportunity to realistically train and exercise in this environment and with these committed resources is so beneficial to all. Thank you to National Highways and partner agencies for facilitating and for all the attendees for their hard work.”

Group Manager, Paul Riddell commented:

“It was a fantastic commitment by all those involved, it’s unusual to exercise into the early hours, but the opportunity to participate in such a realistic scenario and environment allows us with our other responding agencies and colleagues to test, learn and prepare. I’d like to say a huge thank you to all those involved or their flexibility and enthusiasm.”

Hindhead 4

The tunnel was fully closed to the public overnight to allow agencies to work in a realistic and safe environment.

The exercise started at 22:30 and concluded at approximately 02:30. Attendees alongside HIWFRS were National Highways, Surrey Fire & Rescue Service, South East Coast Ambulance, HART & Surrey Police.

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