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Emergency responders from Naval District Washington (NDW) and local police and fire personnel are gearing up as Anti-Terrorism and Force Protection (ATFP) exercise Solid Curtain-Citadel Shield (SC-CS) kicks off this week across NDW.

“Our focus this year covers all phases of crisis response,” said Joseph Goldsberry, lead exercise planner for NDW. “The initial response to an event can be very quick. The recovery phase can last months. In that case, it is important to have several layers of personnel trained to protect our personnel and fully restore our installation operational capability.”

The exercise is scheduled to last for two weeks, and there will be increased fire and police activity at installations throughout the region. Goldsberry said social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook will be utilized throughout the event to keep personnel informed of activities.

At Naval Support Activity (NSA) Washington, SC-CS will culminate with a tabletop exercise at the Admiral Gooding Center slated for Feb. 25.

“We’re going to validate our command and control,” said Audrey Champagne, installation training officer for NSA Washington. “Our goal is to ensure that we have complete control on how we get the message to all the important components so decisions can be made based on that.”

Champagne said the exercise will focus on falsely credentialed intruders trying to gain access to the base to see how police and security elements manage base perimeters.

“Communication is one of our biggest issues, so the fact that we can isolate it during this event is a good thing,” she explained.

Elsewhere in the region, the capstone of the overall SC-CS will be taking place at NSA Bethesda, where exercise leaders are planning a large scale training event at Walter Reed National Medical Center designed to evaluate facility protection and damage mitigation.

“The same plans that we use during the exercise are the same ones we use in a real world event,” said Goldsberry. “It is important to validate our emergency plans and checklists in a safe environment. Our goal is to make the exercise scenario as realistic as possible to facilitate a realistic crisis situation.”

During a crisis response, NDW’s mission has three basic parts, Goldsberry said.

“Protecting personnel, maintaining operations and restoring essential functions will always be our focus,” he said.

For more information and news happening in NDW, visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NavDistWash.