Some Caldwell County offices closed Friday for drill

May. 08, 2013 @ 08:28 PM

The Caldwell County Health and Human Services building at 2345 Morganton Blvd. SW is scheduled to be closed to the public for most of Friday, starting at 10 a.m. and lasting the rest of the day, for an emergency drill involving hundreds of emergency management and other officials across the region.

Passersby might notice ambulances and other emergency-response vehicles rushing to the building on Morganton Boulevard in the early afternoon, when officials expect the start of a mock emergency scenario, county spokeswoman LouAnne Kincaid said.

Officials are asking the public not to call 911 to ask what is happening at the building, she said.

The drill will involve 400 to 500 officials, including medical, fire, emergency and law enforcement workers and administrators, from Lenoir and Caldwell, Alexander, Avery, Watauga and Mitchell counties.

Departments in the building include the Department of Social Services, the health department, planning department, environmental health, building inspections and the Lenoir office of U.S. Rep. Mark Meadows, R-11th. After 10 a.m., only emergency officials will be allowed to enter the complex, except for one public entrance for the sheriff's office.

"The building is going to be in lockdown," Kincaid said, adding most administrators in certain departments, such as social services, will not answer phone calls.