DOD News Release: Hawaii National Guard Hosts Its Largest Ever Disaster-Preparedness Exercise

Posted on Jun 1, 2015 in Latest News, Newsroom, Press Releases

Honolulu, Hawaii– The Hawaii National Guard is hosting exercise Vigilant Guard/Makani Pahili 2015 (VG/MP15), beginning today. VG/MP15 will be held over the next eight days, at multiple locations, on four Hawaiian Islands and will have over 2,200 participants.  More than 700 of those participants are coming from at least four other states and Guam. Observers from seven Asia-Pacific countries will also attend.

Makani Pahili is the state’s annual hurricane exercise led by the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HIEMA), formerly known as State Civil Defense, which coincides with the beginning of the annual hurricane season. Vigilant Guard is a large-scale, regional exercise sponsored by U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) and the National Guard Bureau (NGB). This year, the two exercises have been combined to make this the largest disaster preparedness exercise in Hawaii National Guard history. Planning for VG/MP15 has been in the works for over a year.

VG/MP15 provides an opportunity for the State of Hawaii, and the Hawaii National Guard (HING) in particular, to improve collaborative efforts in regards to emergency preparation, coordination, response and recovery management with federal, regional, local, civilian and military partners during domestic emergencies and catastrophic events.

The HING staff uses exercise such as VG/MP15 to increase proficiency and challenge participants’ comfort zones during National Guard Domestic Operations (NGDO) and emergency management.  Some of the scenarios that will be exercised by military and first responders include disease outbreak, cyber attack, chemical spill, search and rescue, collapsed structure, medical mass casualty and more.

VG/MP15 is primarily a Command Post Exercise (CPX) that takes place within the facilities of the exercise participants.  However, there will be some Field Training Exercises (FTX) or venues where military and civilian personnel will exercise.  Those locations on Oahu include Hawaii National Guard headquarters, the Regional Training Institute (Waimanalo), The Queen’s Medical Center- West Oahu, Pier 29, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, and the State Emergency Operations Center in Diamond Head. On Hawaii Island training will occur at the Keaukaha Military Reservation. On Maui, training will occur at Army National Guard’s Puunene Armory and the Maui Fire Department training area. On Kauai, training will occur at Vindiha Stadium and the National Guard’s Hanapepe armory.

Credentialed news media are invited to the following events/scenarios:

June 3: 10:30 a.m. Joint Task Force 5-0 at Diamond Head Headquarters June 4: 10:00 a.m. Cyber Attack Scenario at University of Hawaii, Manoa June 5: 8:30 a.m. Alternate Port Scenario at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam June 6: 8:30 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. Mass Casualty/Decon at The Queen’s Medical Center- West Oahu June 6: 8:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. Rubble Pile (Search and Rescue, Extraction) at Kalaeloa

If media plan to attend any of those events, please contact Public Affairs to coordinate final details. Most of the areas involved are not open to the public and will need Public Affairs escort to arrive at final site.

For more information, please contact Lt. Col. Charles Anthony, State of Hawaii, Department of Defense Director of Public Affairs at the number below.


Media Contact:

Lt. Col. Charles Anthony

Public Affairs Officer