Sun Life trains for disaster with firefighters

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San Manuel Miner

Sun Life Family Health Centers participated in a training exercise with local fire departments Monday, July 28. The training took place at both the San Manuel and Oracle facilities. It is part of Sun Life preparing their staff to be ready in case there is ever an emergency incident or disaster at one of their facilities. “Safety is my number one focus,” said Al Gutierrez. “In every position I have had, safety has always been a priority.”

Al praised his staff in charge of safety at the health centers, Oscar Flores in San Manuel and Jennifer Sanchez in Oracle. “They are so amazing in what they do,” he said. He said that Oscar has been working with Tri-City Med, San Manuel Fire and the Oracle Fire Department and putting a safety plan together.

The training exercise was first held at the San Manuel Sun Life Health Center and in the afternoon at the Oracle Sun Life facility. The simulated disaster was a water heater explosion with injuries of some staff members. Oscar and Jennifer acted as incident commanders and made sure staff and patients were evacuated in a timely manner. They briefed the first responders upon their arrival about what had happened. The firefighters then entered the facilities and cleared each building making sure everyone was out of the building including the injured that were then treated by EMTs and paramedics. The exercise received good evaluations.

The training is the first in what will be more simulations to prepare staff in case there should ever be a disaster at one of the facilities. The training brings together first responders who also become familiar with the facilities and the staff they may be working with in responding to an emergency. At the debriefing Al Gutierrez thanked the first responders for what they do and for their participation. He said, “We are a very, very safe facility and care about the safety of our patients and staff.”

John Hernandez (129 Posts)

John Hernandez lives in Oracle. He is retired and enjoys writing and traveling. He is active in the Oracle Historical Society. He covers numerous public events, researches historical features and writes business/artist profiles.


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