Emergency Exercise at UAMS April 22-23 Includes Staged Explosions, Armed Intruders

By Ben Boulden

During the exercises a non-lethal “flash bang” grenade will be detonated near the UAMS Biomedical Research building on the northeast area of its campus, near the intersection of Jack Stephens Drive and Plateau Street. The detonation will cause a loud noise and a flash of light but there will be no vibration or threat to any person or building in the vicinity. Intruders armed with fake weapons will enter the Biomedical Research Building as part of the exercises.

Access to two areas will be restricted both days, including the Biomedical Research Building and nearby parking lots along with a portion of the parking lot on the east side of War Memorial Stadium. Simulated patients from the mass casualty incident will be sent from a staging area on the War Memorial Stadium parking lot to participating hospitals during the April 22 exercise.

Signs and roadblocks will be placed near these areas to remind the public of the exercises but no traffic disruption is anticipated off campus either day. A portion of Jack Stephens Drive on the UAMS campus will temporarily be closed both days. All closed areas are expected to reopen by 8 p.m.

The large-scale exercises — among the largest ever held in the state — will include responders and participation by UAMS, the FBI, Department of Energy, Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas State Police, Arkansas Department of Health, Metropolitan Emergency Medical Services (MEMS), Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office and the police, fire and emergency management departments from the cities of Little Rock and North Little Rock, War Memorial Stadium, area hospitals and hazardous materials teams.

UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,275 students, 890 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 12,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit www.uams.edu or uamshealth.com. Find us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), YouTube or Instagram.