Welcome to Exercise Target Red

Exercise Target Red is an immersive tabletop exercise, intended to validate the Players’ ability to complete common tasks at an Incident Command Post. Additionally, the exercise prompts Players to consider the psychosocial impacts on first responders and the community as the ICP is faced with managing a number of challenging and traumatic events.

The exercise takes place in the fictional City of Denton. Denton is modelled on a number of medium sized communities found in Canada. With a population of 50,000 residents, Denton has many of the services and amenities one would find in any small city. It maintains a Police Service, Fire & Rescue Services, Emergency Medical Services (e.g., paramedics), and Emergency Social Services. “Emergency Social Services” is the name given for the services that provide for the care of community residents. This can include providing shelter, food, clothing, and family reunification, personal services including emotional support, first aid, pet care, child care and transportation. Denton also maintains a variety of governmental departments, such as Public Works.

The exercise scenario focuses on an active shooter incident impacting Denton. At the start of the exercise Players are informed they are now employees of the City of Denton, representing whichever agency they work for in the “real world.” For example, a “real” police officer would be acting in the role of a Denton police officer. As the exercise begins, Players receive notification that shots have been fired at one of the city-owned sports centres. They are informed that an Incident Command Post is being established, the Denton EOC is activating in anticipation of providing support to first responders, and that the local hospital is receiving information about the event. As the exercise unfolds, Players are confronted with a number of situations that they must decide how to deal with, e.g., management of victims emerging from the arena. In each case, Players rely on their training, experience, and plans to decide the most appropriate course of action.

It is important to keep in mind that there are no “right” or “wrong” answers to the problems faced by Players. Rather, Players will attempt to demonstrate appropriate site response and site-support activities while considering the psychosocial impacts of the events on first responders and the community.

Please Note Before You Start:

  1. The designated ‘Players’ need to be trained and proficient in Incident Command Post policies and procedures in order to manage this active shooter event. This exercise is not designed to create awareness or introduce ICP functions to players; however, the ‘Players’ will require the skills of ICP functions and performance in order to succeed in provided the required behaviours and responses. There will be simulated casualties in this exercise, and some of the audio-visual and audio inputs into the exercise may be disturbing and distressful to some exercise players.
  2. You will need to designate a Lead Controller to run and manage the exercise. The Lead Controller will need to take the time to review and download all of the relevant materials and to follow the directions in the Controller Guidebook. The lead controller should set aside a day, at minimum, to become sufficiently conversant with the material before the exercise. The Lead Controller will not be able to actively participate in the exercise.
  3. Exercise Target Red will make use of a specific location known throughout the exercise documents as “pod”. The pod will represent an amalgamated Incident Command Post and Police Command Post. The ideal location for this exercise would be at a command vehicle, fire hall, or other area that would typically be used as an Incident Command Post. However, if these facilities are not available, an alternate location may be chosen. These alternates may include boardrooms, classrooms, or other meeting areas. At a minimum, you will require: one room for participants, one room for controllers and a minimum of one computer with speakers per room for playing the Input Video.
  4. The exercise will use the fictional community of “Denton” for this exercise, and all supporting maps, materials and information necessary to become oriented to the community will be available to be downloaded during the training and prior to running the exercise. However, the plans and processes that your team uses in ‘real world’ incidents (i.e., whether or not you use an Incident Command based approach or some other emergency management system) will be adaptable to this exercise.
  5. A computer is required to simultaneously run audio and video files in each of the exercise rooms. You will need to ensure that you can accommodate the technical requirements to run the exercise. View the computer technical requirements to run the exercise.
  6. While this exercise was designed to accommodate an international audience it was developed in Canada and the language used for the exercise is in English.The exercise is framed within a terrorist event, and while no restricted information is required to participate in the exercise, consideration may need to be given to the confidentiality of materials and strategies that exercise participants bring to the exercise.
  7. It is important to remember that even though this is an exercise, for many players who are immersed in the exercise it may seem very real; there is always the possibility that players may experience some significant emotional reactions during or after the exercise. Thus, it will be important to have someone available after the exercise to provide not only an operational debriefing for exercise players but also to provide an opportunity for players to receive a debrief to express any psychosocial responses they may have experienced and to receive any necessary support for those responses.

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