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Large-scale exercise for rescue services underway

A major disaster exercise in Guildford

A live-action exercise for a major event is currently taking place at Guildford station (BBC/Julia Gregory)

A live-action exercise for a major event is underway at a train station in Surrey.

There is a large emergency services presence near Guildford train station, with around 300 emergency personnel responding to 100 incidents.

The South East Coast Ambulance Service (Secamb) said the public should “be aware and not be alarmed” by the exercise, which is due to end at 2.30pm (BST) on Thursday.

Sergeant Olly Brown said the exercise had enabled the different services to “understand each other better, which ultimately saves lives”.

A major disaster exercise in GuildfordA major disaster exercise in Guildford

A large number of emergency services can be seen near Guildford train station (BBC/Julia Gregory)

The exercise is being carried out by partners of the Surrey Local Resilience Forum, which is committed to ensuring that the county is well prepared for emergencies.

In addition to Secamb, these include Surrey Police, British Transport Police, Surrey Fire and Rescue, Network Rail, Surrey County Council, Royal Surrey County Hospital and Guildford Borough Council.

Also involved are the Environment Agency, Rail Accident Investigation Authority, South Western Railway, Great Western Railway, Avanti West Coast, Rail Delivery Group and volunteers from Surrey 4×4.

A major disaster exercise in GuildfordA major disaster exercise in Guildford

A major accident drill is currently taking place at Guildford station (BBC/Julia Gregory)

Dave Nelson, Emergency Preparedness, Response and Resilience Manager at Secamb, said: “This pre-planned exercise is an important part of our safeguarding of our resilience and response plans, which we will review after the exercise and strengthen where necessary.”

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