Training & Testing

Each year, MassDEP conducts field exercises in each of the 6 GRS Regions. Each exercise includes at least two neighboring towns and involves fire department and harbormaster personnel as well as other town agencies and U.S. Coast Guard representatives, all of which are involved in the planning process. All MassDEP GRS exercises are HSEEP*-compliant and therefore follow a standard planning, conduct, and evaluation process as described below.

The two overarching objectives for each and every GRS exercise are to 1) Train First Responders in the use of the pre-positioned oil spill response equipment provided to them by MassDEP and, 2) Test and Validate Massachusetts GRS's.  Additional objectives include demonstrating the ability to assemble a spill response organization utilizing Incident Command System (ICS) principles and demonstrating and testing the ability to effectively communicate between multiple local, state, and federal agencies utilizing both UHF and VHF communications.

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See the Regional Exercise pages to view and download site-specific GRS's, current Exercise Plans, and After Action Reports from past exercises. 

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* - Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program