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ICC facilitates simulated terror attack

Exercise ARDEN, was held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) Birmingham on Thursday 15th August 2013. It was coordinated by the ICC, West Midlands Police and the other emergency services in conjunction with CBRNE Ltd a partner in Project PRACTICE, to validate equipment, processes and procedures for preparedness and resilience against a CBRN terrorist attack.

The scenario simulated the deliberate release of a nerve agent within the ICC building. More than 400 people participated either as volunteers acting as casualties, first responders or scientists from the EU Project PRACTICE. Data on behaviour of the affected people, as well as the behaviour of first responders and ICC security staff will be used to help develop a Human Behaviour User Manual for educating the public on how to behave in the event of a chemical incident.

The exercise included specialist training of ICC security personnel and deployment of ICC safety procedures. Dominic Kelly, Managing Director of CBRNE Ltd says: “The team at the ICC have been instrumental in helping to shape Exercise ARDEN and in communicating their findings in the debrief afterwards. Their input has proved invaluable and will help to shape future developments for the project.”

Paul Rutherford, General Manager at the ICC says: “Yesterday’s planned simulated terror attack in conjunction with West Midlands Police and CBRNE Ltd demonstrates the flexibility of our venue and the skills of the ICC team to facilitate such an unusual and important exercise. The ICC is proud to have been chosen to host the event as a result of its many outstanding credentials in the way it handles all kinds of high profile events. This event has also helped us gain valuable knowledge that can only serve the ICC well in the future.” Project PRACTICE is funded by the European Union; a further two exercises will be held in Sweden and Poland over the next 18 months.

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