Leader

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

SC Terrorism drill

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • SC Terrorism drill

    COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The scenario was the kind of day emergency
    officials pray never happens: Five potential terrorists attacks
    spread across the state from Beaufort to Greenville.
    But it was only a test, conducted by the state Emergency
    Management Division.
    Authorities mobilized their response to the five incidents
    Tuesday at the division's headquarters. On Wednesday, the teams
    went into the field as the scenarios played out in real time.
    "We want to be prepared to protect our citizens and practicing
    is the best way we can do it," Emergency Management Director Ron
    Osborne said.
    Osborne visited several of the sites, including one at the South
    Carolina Fire Academy's more than 200-acre campus tucked in the
    woods on the outskirts of Columbia.
    For Wednesday's drill, the academy became Columbia Metropolitan
    Airport, resident training manager Phillip Russell said.
    The mock incident started when the two-man flight crew of a
    cargo plane noticed two strangers posing as employees loading
    packages on their plane. The men began to fight, and one of the
    crewmen was severely injured while the other was taken hostage.
    The State Law Enforcement Division, state health officials and a
    special rapid-response team rushed to the scene.
    Normally more officers from more agencies would go to a
    dangerous standoff like this, but at the same time, the drill had
    four other potential terror incidents going on other places in the
    state to stretch emergency responders to their limit.
    In Beaufort, a ship was spewing a chemical agent into the air.
    Meanwhile, a bomb exploded near the entrance to a public event in
    Greenville, and a call about a bomb in a catering truck at
    Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia quickly turned into another
    chemical attack.
    More than 2,000 emergency officials, law officers and volunteers
    acting as victims participated in the drills.
    The state activated all its rapid-response teams, 14 of which
    include special agents trained at detecting and responding to a
    chemical or biological attack. The other team combines SLED agents
    with specially trained workers from the Department of Health and
    Environmental Control.
    "There have been a few minor problems," Osborne said around
    noon, after the drills had been going on for about four hours.
    "But that's the reason why we do an exercise like this."
    Officials conducting the drills keep all outside interference
    away to make the exercise as true as possible, Russell said.
    The suspects are trained to react to how they are treated by law
    enforcement. And even though Wednesday's incident goes along just
    like it was scripted and the terrorists give up without harming
    anyone else, it could have easily ended a different way, Russell
    said.
    "Since this is real world, they might just decide to barge in
    the plane and go 'Boom, boom, boom, you're all gone,' " Russell
    said.
    Instead, the negotiator continued to talk to the terrorists over
    a radio channel, one time offering to get the suspects some food,
    at another, skillfully deflecting a request from a terrorist to
    talk to Fox News Channel's Geraldo Rivera.
    The radio transmissions are monitored by other participants and
    consultants who will evaluate everyone's actions after the drill is
    over.
    Meanwhile, armed personnel carriers rumbled across what was
    supposed to be the tarmac, protecting agents who were trying to
    determine if any biological or chemical agents had been released.
    At the same time, a SLED bomb disposal team combed the area near
    the plane to look for explosives.
    "Notice how methodical everyone involved in this is," Russell
    said. "They haven't been going 100 mph. They take their time and
    think of every move they need to make."
    Emergency officials will spend the next few days reviewing
    results of the drill and figuring out what could be done better,"
    Osborne said.
    "Heaven forbid terrorists should ever attack South Carolina,"
    Osborne said. "But if they do, we will be ready."

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

300x600 Ad Unit (In-View)

Collapse

Upper 300x250

Collapse

Taboola

Collapse

Leader

Collapse
Working...
X