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9/27/2002


Rail News: Passenger Rail
Sound Transit simulates hostage situation on commuter train



Itís a sign of the times. In the past, the thought of a train being hijacked wasnít a huge concern ó after all, the train can go only where tracks are laid and signals are cleared. But the new normalcy dictates that anywhere large numbers of people congregate can be a target for violence.



So on Sept. 26, Sound Transit and local emergency responders held an emergency training exercise at Auburn Rail Yard where they simulated a commuter trainís passengers being taken hostage.



As part of the drill, law enforcement personnel entered the train and rendered it safe. Then fire and medical personnel were permitted to tend to simulated injuries.



During the past two years, Sound Transit officials have held several training exercises with Burlington Northern Santa Fe train crews (who operate Sounder trains), dispatchers and on-board Wakenhut security personnel. Also, Sound Transit and BNSF have provided training for 265 fire fighters and emergency medical services personnel, and 165 police from 21 departments.

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