An American city tested itself for the first time Monday against a potential ”dirty bomb” attack by terrorists, launching a full-scale drill to hone the skills of emergency workers and top decision-makers alike. The drill and another exercise simulating a bioterrorism attack in Chicago are being staged this week as part of the federal government’s effort to better prepare cities for terrorist attacks. The two drills, which cost $16 million to stage and 22 months to script, are so realistic that some of the bomb ”victims” in Seattle screamed after seeing their graphic-looking ”burns.” The federal government conducted terrorism attack drills in Portsmouth, N.H., and Denver in 2000, but this week’s exercises are the first large-scale counterterrorism drills since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Full Story
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