Agencies participate in drill to better equip Arizona in case of disaster

"We're here to help people in their darkest hour and that's really, that is where it comes from," Judy Kioski said.

Southern California has a 7.8 magnitude earthquake, 400,000 evacuees come to Arizona, and the question is... will Arizona be prepared?

Thanks to more than 75 agencies and a four-day National Mass Care Exercise, the answer to that question becomes all the more clear.

"It could be a natural disaster, it could be a human-caused disaster... coming to Arizona," Colin Williams said.

Agencies like the Red Cross say their job is to prepare for the unexpected. By participating in an exercise like this, they can identify gaps in service that could become critical issues during a crisis.

"Language issues, handicap issues, people come in with pets, those create some issues," Williams said. "What if somebody shows up to the shelter with a gun? So many things to think about."

Arizona is the fifth state to host the National Mass Care Exercise, which supports the larger strategy to ensure agencies can work together to meet the needs of thousands when disaster strikes.

"It takes all of us in the community, right?" Kioski asked. "To come together to provide those various resources."