By Patricia Hall, Fairfax Family Fun
Kids (and adults!) love trucks, and touch-a-truck events in Northern Virginia are plentiful and popular. Beyond learning about trucks and industry vehicles and what they do, you can learn about what it takes to keep traffic flowing and how local agencies coordinate emergency work by attending the annual Incident Management Open House.
The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) hosts this event to inform the public — while adding a bit of fun, too. This will be the third year for the open house, set for Saturday, October 26, 2019, 9 am to 1 pm. Admission is free.
The VDOT Incident Management Open House gives visitors a chance to learn about equipment, systems, and staff involved in transportation efforts. The event serves as a “preview” of Federal Highway Administration’s National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week Nov. 10-16, 2019. Guests at the event, at VDOT’s Northern Virginia District Office (4975 Alliance Drive in Fairfax) can enjoy an outdoor touch-a-truck with more than 70 vehicles.
There also will be live demonstrations of K-9 skills, trapped patient extrication, live electricity lines, technical rescue, drone operations, HazMat, tree removal and more. There also will be a small kids’ play area (indoors) and food trucks.
Some displays are inside the VDOT building but most activities (including rescue demos) take place outdoors, so be sure to dress for the weather (last year was bright and sunny… but also chilly and windy!). See below for a list of participating agencies and more photos from the 2018 open house.
Incident Management Open House displays include:
- VDOT: Safety Service Patrol (SSP) trucks, incident support unit, evacuation trailer, traffic trailer, spill trailer, incident management response vehicle, front-end loader, tandem-axle dump truck, Chantilly maintenance response truck, snowblower, Leesburg incident response truck, bridge inspection bucket truck, signal bucket truck, signal cabinet, Transportation Operations Center terminal, signal operations, public affairs, safety officer, bike and pedestrian safety
- Arlington County Police Department: armored personnel carrier
- Coleman Motor Company: 50-ton rotator truck
- DC Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency: Preparedness booth
- Federal Highway Administration: Strategic Highway Research Program II booth
- Fairfax City Police Department: Marked cruiser
- Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department: Command Aide 400, Battalion Chief 402, EMS Supervisor 402, Community Risk Reduction booth
- Fairfax County Office of Emergency Management: Preparedness booth
- Fairfax County Police Department: “Fairfax 1” Bell 429 helicopter, command bus, traffic response vehicle, crash reconstruction unit
- Falls Church City Police Department: K-9 Stryker, K-9 Fitz, marked cruisers
- Henry’s Wrecker Service: 60-ton rotator truck, flatbed wrecker, utility trailer, skid steer
- Loudoun County Fire and Rescue Department: HazMat 619, HazMat Support 619, Medical Ambulance Bus 623, Tower 680, Tanker 627, Engine 602, Fire Trailer
- Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office: Traffic truck
- Manassas Park City Police Department: Marked cruiser
- Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination: Technology booth
- Maryland State Highway Administration: Coordinated Highways Action Response Team (CHART) truck, tow truck
- Maryland Transportation Authority Police Department: Command bus, drone, Vehicle Response Truck (VRT), marked cruiser
- Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police Department: K-9 Bo, marked cruiser, SWAT booth, recruitment booth
- Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative: Live Electricity Line Demo Trailer, bucket truck
- Northern Virginia Emergency Response System: Preparedness booth
- Prince William Police Department: Command bus, motor unit
- Redman Fleet Services: 85-ton rotator truck, air cushion truck
- Stafford County Sheriff’s Office: Command bus, drone truck
- Transurban: Express Assist highway truck
- Virginia Department of Emergency Management: Drone unit
- Virginia State Police: Command bus, armored personnel carrier, crash reconstruction unit, motor units, recruitment booth
- Waggy’s Towing: 85-ton rotator truck, 50-ton rotator truck
- WTOP Traffic Center: Mobile traffic unit
Photos (c) P. Hall