The U.K. is staging an exercise today to test the response of the emergency services and government to a possible terrorist attack on London’s Underground rail system during this summer’s Olympic Games.
The former Aldwych station, in central London, will be the focus of the simulated attack, which is being coordinated by the Home Office and London’s Metropolitan Police.
“The initial incident will test the tactical response, including evacuation of the station, rescuing injured people and managing the crime scene,” Chris Allison, the national Olympic security coordinator, said in an e-mailed statement. “The exercise will go on to test how senior decision makers manage the impact of the incident, the investigation to catch those responsible and a range of issues such as travel disruption, protest and organized crime which may impact on the smooth running of the Olympic Games.”
The U.K. armed forces will call up 2,100 reservists to make up the 13,500 military personnel assisting with security at the games, Defense Secretary Philip Hammond said on Feb. 20. HMS Ocean, the Royal Navy’s biggest ship, will be moored in the River Thames, while ground-to-air missiles and Typhoon jets will protect the U.K. capital’s airspace.
“We are determined to leave nothing to chance to deliver a safe and secure games that London, the U.K. and the world can enjoy,” James Brokenshire, the crime and security minister, said in the statement. “We need to test our plans and this exercise gives us the opportunity to inform, reassure and build confidence in the U.K.’s safety and security operation.”