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Friday, September 23, 2005

Seattle area: More Homeland Security Training

Reported here:
If you happen to see what looks like a speedboat ramming a state ferry and exploding in Elliott Bay on Sunday morning, don't be alarmed - it's only a test.

More than a dozen federal, state and local agencies will simulate a terrorist attack on an out-of-service ferry heading to Coleman Dock from Bainbridge Island.

The training exercise, scheduled for between 8 and 11 a.m., is designed to test a newly formulated response plan for terrorist attacks on the water. It also will test the ability of many agencies to work together.

'For us to be able to play and drill so that we can respond, we have to make this as realistic as possible,' said A.D. Vickery, assistant chief of the Seattle Fire Department.

The Seattle event will be the most visible of four exercises Sunday in the Puget Sound area. Tacoma will simulate an explosion inside a cargo container. Two other 'table-top' scenarios will be simulated by officials but won't involve people in the field: terrorists taking over a cruise ship and releasing a biological toxin, and the discovery of a motorboat packed with explosives.

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