Armed, dan­ger­ous & ready

ANTI-TER­ROR EX­ER­CISE

Sunday Sun - - News - By KALI LINDSAY Re­porter kali.lindsay@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

Po­lice and emer­gency ser­vice were train­ing deep in the Durham coun­try­side WEAPONS at the ready, these armed po­lice look like they are pre­pared for any­thing.

Stalk­ing their un­seen prey, they looks more like the Ter­mi­na­tor rather than Dixon of Dock Green.

But this is the face of modern polic­ing, and these of­fi­cers werre tak­ing part in an anti-ter­ror­ism train­ing ex­er­cise to test the skills of the po­lice, fire, paramedics and the lo­cal au­thor­ity.

It al­lows the po­lice and part­ners to test ex­actly how they re­spond in the event a ter­ror at­tack.

Durham Con­stab­u­lary has stressed it was not in re­sponse to any spe­cific threat to the re­gion or to the site where the event was held.

Chief In­spec­tor Gra­ham Milne, from Cleve­land and Durham Spe­cial­ist Op­er­a­tions Unit, said it was im­por­tant they con­tinue to test their re­sponse to an at­tack.

“This is one of a num­ber of rou­tine ex­er­cises or­gan­ised to test the re­sponse of the emer­gency ser­vices and other part­ner agen­cies.

“It is in no way linked to a spe­cific threat. We carry out ex­er­cises to test con­tin­gency plans and the co-or­di­na­tion of the re­sponse to a ma­jor in­ci­dent on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.

“The na­tional ter­ror threat re­mains at se­vere and re­cent events in this coun­try and across Europe show that we need to en­sure we are pre­pared in the event that some­thing does hap­pen in our re­gion.

“A huge amount of work and prepa­ra­tion was put into this ex­er­cise and I want to thank ev­ery­one at Kyn­ren in par­tic­u­lar for their sup­port.”

Durham Con­stab­u­lary, County Durham and Dar­ling­ton Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice, the North East Am­bu­lance Ser­vice, Durham County Coun­cil, were in­volved in the ex­er­cise.

Do­minic Brown, area man­ager for emer­gency re­sponse at County Durham and Dar­ling­ton Fire and Res­cue, said: “This is all part of be­ing pre­pared to keep the peo­ple of County Durham and Dar­ling­ton as safe as pos­si­ble.”

NEAS HART and Re­silience Man­ager, Mar­i­anne Wal­ton, said: “We were able to test our plans to re­spond to an in­ci­dent of this type where we would have to deal with a large amount of in­jured ca­su­al­ties.”

Roger Goodes, of Durham County Coun­cil, said ev­ery ex­er­cise “brings fresh chal­lenges”.

It comes after po­lice said wit­nesses should run to safety dur­ing a ter­ror­ist at­tack in­stead of try­ing to film videos on their phones. The warn­ing came as a new video was re­leased which in­formed chil­dren and young peo­ple about what to do if they are caught up in a ter­ror at­tack.

Bri­tain’s counter-ter­ror po­lice network is call­ing for the “run, hide, tell” mes­sage to be taught to school chil­dren, fol­low­ing the out­rage at the Ari­ana Grande con­cert in Manch­ester, which claimed the lives of 22 peo­ple.

Vic­tims in­cluded chil­dren as young as eight.

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