It’s a 24 hour drill with more than 250 players, including firefighters from both Chicago and the suburbs, police, the Salvation Army and dozens of actors playing victims.
The backdrop is two abandoned buildings that were about to be demolished. It’s all designed to test the fire department’s response to a real life emergency.
The exercise begins with several 911 calls. A tornado has just hit the city’s Englewood neighborhood, trapping people in their homes and leaving dozens of others sprawled out throughout the neighborhood.
There’s chaos as the fake victims try to get to their loved ones, while others scream for help.
Dozens of firefighters and paramedics participate in the drill hoping to get real life experience, and test their resources for potential natural and/or man-made disasters.
The drill cost about $250,000 and was funded by a grant from Homeland Security.
Officials say they will identify what went right and what went wrong and see what areas need improvement and reevaluation plans, if necessary.
They will have another drill in June.