Militant terrorist groups, weapons of mass destruction (WMD), casualties, enduring economic impact, and frightening chaos: it’s all in a day’s work for NERRTC: The National Emergency Response and Rescue Training Center of TEEX.
For the past two years, TEEX / NERRTC has been chosen by the Division of Emergency Management (DEM) to conduct WMD / Terrorism Incident Response Exercises for the Texas Domestic Preparedness Program.
In May, TEEX / NERRTC conducted an exercise involving the Port of Houston and Harris County. Texas Governor Rick Perry visited the exercise Tuesday, May 21.
Governor Perry was briefed on the terrorist scenario and toured two of the multiple emergency response cells located in the Houston area, visiting with some of the more than 500 government and emergency response personnel involved.
The exercise was custom-designed to challenge local government in evaluating its response to a terrorist incident. TEEX / NERRTC staff visited Harris County and the Port weeks before the event, to build an exercise as realistic as possible. Real businesses, locations, and events were featured to maximize the value of the exercise.
“Local jurisdictions want to test their own plans and integrate their response with adjacent communities, state resources and the federal response. They do not want some fictional location,” says Doug Rape’, TEEX / NERRTC program coordinator. “The events must unfold using the threat they face, the risks they know they have and the response capabilities they own or those they’ll request. They want to test their plan on their turf.”
TEEX / NERRTC will conduct similar exercises involving the Dallas-Ft. Worth International Airport in June and Bush/Hobby International Airports in October.
“TEEX is known for its excellence in training,” says Dr. Kem Bennett, TEEX Director. “We take the challenge of preparing Texans for terrorism very seriously, and have assembled the best team to do the job.”
Since it’s inception in 1998, TEEX / NERRTC has delivered over 500 WMD/Terrorism Incident Courses across to over 23,000 emergency responders in 56 states and territories. NERRTC has developed and delivers 12 WMD/Terrorism-related courses under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Justice. Its staff includes hand-picked expert trainers representing impressive careers in emergency response, local government, state government, federal government, military and academia.