Don’t duck and cover! The disaster at the Barclays Center tonight is only a drill

The Brooklyn Paper
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Don’t be alarmed by the dead and bleeding people or the figures in gas masks running out of military vehicles — it’s only a drill.

Marines and firefighters are staging a chemical attack drill at the Barclays Center tonight to prep first responders for the unthinkable, and they are not skimping on the Hollywood details, according to a Marines spokesman.

“Marines will go in flight suits, [hazardous materials] suits with self-breathing apparatuses, gas masks, the whole nine yards,” said Sgt. Kuande Hall of the Chemical Biological Incident Response Force, a Maryland-based unit that is training New York firefighters to respond to chemical attacks this week. “We are preparing for that thing that we all hope won’t happen: a nuclear explosion, a big chemical explosion.”

Tonight, from 8 pm to 2 am, a fake explosion will test firefighters’ response know-how at the 18,000 seat arena at the busy intersection of Flatbush and Atlantic avenues after a week of training around the city and on Randall’s Island.

The attack scenario, according to Hall, is a plot with every element planned to the T: a fake president and first lady will be in attendance at a packed fake basketball game that is to be rocked by a simulated explosion. Firefighters on the scene will have to determine what fake chemicals or radiological agents are in the air. They will then rush dead-people mannequins and Office of Emergency Management actors made up to look like blast victims out of the arena, first through a decontamination line attended to by people in hazardous material suits, then to a medical tent.

They did miss one detail, though. The scene staged in the home of the Brooklyn Nets will center on a game between the Boston Celtics and the Nets’ hated rivals across the East River, the New York Knicks, a mistake Hull said was an oversight.

“We should probably mention that to the trainers who wrote it,” Hull said. “That or I might have misheard.”

Residents can expect to see military vehicles, emergency personnel in head-to-toe suits, and “disaster victims” near Dean Street between Flatbush and Sixth avenues.

“I hope we don’t scare anyone,” Hull said.

The Marines unit was established in 1996 in response to the sarin attacks in Tokyo’s subway with a mission to assist first responders in the face of chemical attacks, not to fight in American streets or investigate crimes, according to Hull. The unit has been on hand at events including presidential inaugurations, State of the Union addresses, and the 1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta, Ga and, according to Hull, it has been training New York firefighters for several years.

Atlantic Terminal, the busy subway and Long Island Railroad station beneath the modern-day Barclays Center, was the target of a real terror attack in 1997, when two men plotted to explode pipe bombs inside the station.

Reach reporter Natalie Musumeci at or by calling (718) 260-4505. Follow her at Reach editor Nathan Tempey at or by calling (718) 260-4504. Follow him at
Updated 10:14 pm, July 9, 2018: Updated with detailed information about the drill.
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Reasonable discourse

John Wasserman from Windsor Terrace says:
Strictly training purposes.
Sept. 13, 2013, 2:58 pm
Eve from BK says:
How do they expect to handle this kind of disaster without Long Island College Hospital & it's hazmat emergency room? RESTORE LICH!
Sept. 13, 2013, 4:34 pm
David Icky from Niburu says:
What's Alex Jones going to say about this?
Sept. 13, 2013, 5:06 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I don't see why they can't just use their regular bases for this rather than place it in the middle of an already congested area.
Sept. 13, 2013, 5:20 pm
Denis Potvin from Uniondale says:
They are practicing for Saturday night Islander-Ranger games.
Sept. 13, 2013, 5:31 pm
Jerry from Dyker Heights says:
Oh, Tal -- go away.
They hold these exercises in busy areas specifically to replicate likely urban scenarios and real-life factors ... which you can't do in an insular training facility.
Sorry if it screwed up your night in Westchester.
Sept. 13, 2013, 7:33 pm
JAY from NYC says:
if the situation is large enough for the Marines to get called in, LICH would likely be in the affected area, and would have to be e-vaced and would not be useable, not too mention the surrounding neighborhoods as well..
Tal, why don't you stay in your stupid crummy town? Oh wai,t you don't, you come to my city and that is because interesting things are here. Guess what, interesting things, like mens pro basketball, are terrorist targets, especially when its in a super dense population area that will be hard to get responders into and victims out of, especially if its some kind of large scale chemical attack. Seen the news out of Syria lately Tal?. This stuff is no joke.
The fact that the area is congested is EXACTLY why its a good training area, because you need to learn how to get multiple agencies working together to deal with logistical issue,s such as traffic congestion, in a densely populated urban area.
Imagine if the BC did get hit with a high explosive truck bomb combined with nerve gas, and they had to try and sort this out in real time with who knows how many lives at stake? For instance how are you getting air support on station? How are you even getting personal into the area? Where are you staging your extraction element, where are you setting up your decon element, where are you going to set up the security cordon and place the security element? Where do you set up medical and how do you get casualties to it? Oh, and then the wind shifts and all of it has to be changed and half your medical team just got killed because of the wind shift because they could not move fast enough to get out of the way. or get their MOPP gear on.
And I have posted this before, but the Barclays center is a big fat truck bomb/CBRN magnet, its right on the street and is totally vulnerable to attack.
Other than the subway, this is about the last place I would want to be. Obviously someone else saw it that way too, probably at least a 2 two star, and decided to train for the possibility that it gets hit, since it is so attractive as a target and so vulnerable.
Figures though Tal that you would say something so fing stupid as you did, considering that you never served in the military (which is obvious in the pure ignorance in your post) and second you left Israel to avoid having to serve, and yet you basically then come on here and complain about those who do serve and kept your rear end safe.
Sept. 13, 2013, 7:56 pm
Jerry from Dyker Heights says:
Right, Jay; Tal is clueless.

Maybe he thinks that terrorists' and other crazies' No. 1 targets would be Randalls Island, Floyd Bennett Field, Owls Head Park, Rockaway Beach, the Socrates Sculpture Garden or the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Preserve. (not-so-laughing lol).

This moron clearly doesn't get why real-world NYC logistics training is essential.
Sept. 13, 2013, 9:41 pm
puzzled from bk says:
why waste time on tal? he's a tourist who lives and works in some non nyc burg and cares only about is his effin' car, aka his way out of toonerville. no cred.
Sept. 13, 2013, 10:59 pm
Johnny Hammersticks from Brooklyn says:
That's right Tal, because terrorists are likely to strike non-populated, low trafficked areas.

A basketball arena over a huge transportation hub isn't a major target and they shouldn't have drills at to replicate reality in case that ever happened. You make plenty of sense.
Sept. 13, 2013, 11:38 pm
Prospect Heights Resident from Prospect Heights says:
As much as I disagree with Tal, yet enjoy debating him on this site, I highly doubt that the above comment actually came from him.
Sept. 14, 2013, 12:51 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
It's so nice to hear from the haters, and perhaps some of you should start switching to decaff, because commenting at the time seems to make a lot of you pretty cranky. BTW, I am aware of that site being a possible target as I have heard of the infamous Landmarks Plot, back in 1996, where this site was one of them. Seriously, the fact that it could be a terrorist target was one of the many reasons NOT to have an arena there. Then again, Ratner only got it thanks to friends in high places. Before any continues to act provincial on this, the entire Atlantic Yards complex is done with the ESDC, which happens to be a state agency, therefore I do have a say on this since my taxes are going to them as well as yours. The same thing implies with the military being of the nation, so a person living nowhere close to here can say about this. Please try to understand what jurisdictions are on this before trying to make a such a claim. On a side note, cut the personal attacks and ganging up, because I find that to be nothing of the weak and cowardly especially when it comes from those who continue to hide behind their computer screens and act pretty childish rather than their actual ages.
Sept. 14, 2013, 4:04 pm
T-Bone from DoBro says:
Tal is such a herb. You must mean your parents taxes, since you live in their basement. By the way, I was coming back to the city via Metro North and stopped at the Pleasantville station. I noted all the dirt bags that got on. No wonder you're always trying to be a Brooklyn poser.
Sept. 14, 2013, 4:25 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Actually, I do pay taxes especially when it comes to income, and not that long ago, I was filling out a W-2 Form, but this is besides the point. What you keep forgetting is that the Atlantic Yards is being done by the state, not the city. Keep in mind that ULURP was sidestepped for SEQRA on this. Also, that the area was NEVER rezoned by the city, it was the state that overridden them so Ratner can build there despite how much it was opposed by politicians and residents of the area. Once again, anything in the city that is run by the state or national government is my business just as much as it's your's because I too am paying taxes to this, therefore I have just as much of a say.
Sept. 14, 2013, 4:51 pm
Johnny Hammersticks from Brooklyn says:
Yea. Talk about a keyboard tough guy. Since you're a tax payer, and god forbid another terrorist attack happens, just tell whoever shows up you don't need their help. I'm sure they'll have no problem leaving a waste of life dickhead like you behind and move on to help someone deserving of it.
Sept. 14, 2013, 4:53 pm
whaaat? from Brooklyn says:
Tal wrote -- ' Actually, I do pay taxes especially when it comes to income, and not that long ago, I was filling out a W-2 Form'

You 'actually' 'do' pay taxes?
'Especially when it comes to income'? (what does that even mean?)
You "fill[ed] out" a W2?
Are these supposed to be impressive revelations or are you still in high schoool?
Sept. 14, 2013, 5:11 pm
JAY from NYC says:
Tal, actually income tax was due all the way back in April, so if you are just filling out a w-2 now, then I guess you were unemployed for the past six months which would explain the living in your parents basement thing someone else posted.
As for the rest of the caca you posted, Tal, no one said you can't post here, you made that up and invented it and then portrayed yourself as a victim of your own self-imagined issue.
You also seem to be under the delusion that people think you are smart and clever and come up with the "inside truth" which you reveal to the world in your posts. Let me make it clear, NO ONE thinks that but you Tal.
As for not building an arena because it could be a target, if we used your rational we would never build anything, we would all just drive to Canada on weekends when we wanted something to do and then post on Canadian websites and say "I pay a border crossing tax so I get to tell Canada how to run itself."
If we did things your way Tal we would shut down the country and do nothing. Your comments are particularly disgraceful in light of your post calling the freedom tower a white flag, and then you post here arguing not to build things because of a terrorist threat.
As for your moronic comments about the military Tal, you are certainly free to make them, but I highly encourage you to go to the nearest military recruiting station and sign up and swear in, as they will literally run the stupid out of you. Although in your case Tal, you have more stupid in you than the average recruit, you might actually not score high enough on the entrance exam to be accepted, and if you were lucky enough to be accepted, you might have to actually repeat basic a time or two before you figured things out.
Tal you act like the fact that you allegedly pay taxes erases the fact that you have never done anything for anyone. It doesn't.
Nor does it change you from being a big mouth done nothing to someone who made a difference. And no Tal, donating your spare change to Israel does not count either.
Sept. 14, 2013, 6:48 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
For the record, I am not against those that wish to disagree with for I am very open minded to others, but I do feel that lines have been crossed whenever you guys make such personal attacks rather than addressing the actual issue as if you have nothing to actually debate with hence acting like a coward.
Sept. 14, 2013, 9:14 pm
bkmanhatposeur from brokeland says:
Yeah Tal. Don't expect to be saved when the zombie apocalypse happens.
Sept. 14, 2013, 10:51 pm
jay from nyc says:
no Tal, you invent nonsense and then when people call you on it, you claim you are a victim. You make more personal attacks on here than everyone else combined, and then are the first to cry when people call you on it.
On top of that, your "arguments" are uninformed have little to no basis in facts, and you frequently make up things such as the BDS are terrorists and Nazis. You make stuff up that does not even make sense Tal and people recognize you for what you are
The problem is that there is nothing to debate with you Tal, its like trying to play tennis by yourself, it does not work, you hit the ball over the net, and there is no one on the other side of the court to hit it back, and in the meantime Tal sits on the sidelines and claims that someone playing tennis by themselves is a personal attack on Tal.
Its stupid, but that is exactly what you do Tal and if you look around, EVERYONE is basically telling you the same thing, and instead of you getting that, you continue to labor under the delusion that its not you who is wrong, its everyone else.
Post what you want Tal, but if you put it up in a public form, people are free to comment on it, and people pick up on obviously stupid pretty fast.
Sept. 15, 2013, 11:01 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off all, I feel that all of you are just reading a reflection in the mirror, because it's all backwards, plus I have never called anyone an idiot or stupid just for disagreeing, that was something you guys did with your comments as proof. Also, if you have nothing nice to say to someone, then don't say anything at all. Even though I do tend to disagree with a lot of things here, I don't attack the person, I just disagree with the viewpoint as Michael Moore does especially when he mentions conservatives like George W Bush with what they believe on, but he doesn't hate them personally. Understanding this drill, I do feel that it can be done without causing any major inconvenience. Perhaps, if it was done when it's not the peak of traffic, it wouldn't bother anyone. As for the arena, the primary reasons I despise it so much is because it was a product of not just a secret backroom deal, but it also involved the abuse of eminent domain and corporate welfare, which alone are reasons to hate it so much. Of course I know some of you are just as fanatical on this just like those on Nets Daily, who have a history of making personal attacks on the opposition and even on Oder himself, who has been known for giving real coverage on the Atlantic Yards. On a side note, you guys really do need to chill and keep your egos to yourselves.
Sept. 15, 2013, 3:33 pm
jay from nyc says:
no Tal it is you who are backwards. Yes you have called plenty of people names, I refer back to the BDS discussion for example and for which I still waiting for you to offer a shred of proof to support your dips**T claim that they are terrorists and Nazis.
You have called lots of people names Tal, you like to use the term hater and hateraid among other things, you like to imply that people are anti-Semites when they don't share your stupid view on Israel, you like to call people childish and cowards, you can scroll up to your posts on this thread alone to see some of your name calling.
Sept. 15, 2013, 4:21 pm
whaat? from Brooklyn says:
er, tal, but you don't come across as just another cranky opinionist. you come across as a blindered car obsessed non nyc nutter.

to tal: you don't live - or, i get, work - here so your obsession w. nyc traffic and cars is freaky .

in your view the whole *&%$ing city should be tailored to your fast exit from nyc to home. you're car dependent in your parents' Whoville, or wherever you live, so project your OCD car anxiety on nyc. which is crazy.

the more nutstuff you post the more i understand why a grown guy is living with his parents in car dependent Whoville and can't do better.
Sept. 15, 2013, 4:42 pm
whaat? from Brooklyn says:
how the hell did tal drag antisemitism and nazis into this?

i am jewish. my wife is jewish, tal is some kind of kook, apparently an underemployed nut with a motor vehicle fixation.
cut the victim cr*p, tal. it's insulting.
Sept. 15, 2013, 4:55 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Jay brought up the BDS and Nazis, and I happen to be an Israeli-born Jew myself hence he is the one who is insulting here, not me and that's a fact.
Sept. 15, 2013, 6:25 pm
jay from nyc says:
ummm no Tal you called the BDS folks terrorists and Nazis and to date have not provided any proof that they are in fact such things, in other words you invented it and called people names with no facts.
Sept. 15, 2013, 7:08 pm
whaat? from Brooklyn says:
enoughalready, tal.
you have dragged antisemitism and israelihood into your many debates here; and i don't care if you're an antarctican-born jew.
imo you are some kind of nut, and nuthood is an equal-opp affliction that transcends every ethnicity and religion.

you're car-anxious and protective because you live in Whatville and your car equals Life Itself? big deal. move to some nonurban carhappy place or move to. so move to the car-friendlier midwest or to some city - like ours - with decent mass transit.

personally ... i was out of my parents' house by 21, lived uncomfortably while striving and learning (which impelled me to do better and earn more) and paid my grubby real-life dues - as my parents raised me to do (and they were proud when i did it).

i didn't live w mom-dad and whine because the nearest city, in which i did not work or live, cramped my driving style. (what driving? i sold car no. 1 postgrad and, early on, could've afforded another only if subsidized by mom and dad.)

you remind me of my cousin in queens. always lived w mom and dad, so could always afford car-insurance-etc. despite cr*p could jobs, college-hopped and shopped without an eye to RW cost (bc mom and dad would never evict if she fell short on fakely-low 'rent').
totally protected environment, which she still thinks is RL.
the dues-paying 99 percent rest of us roll our eyes when she lectures about 'how things oughta be, for my convenience."

Sept. 15, 2013, 7:37 pm
bkmanhatposeur from Brokelyn says:
So Tal the anti-bike Jihadi of the anti-bicycle Taliban is Israeli born.
I wonder if this clown served in the Israeli Army, if he did he wouldn't be complaining about the exercises.
Sept. 16, 2013, 8:06 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
For the record, I haven't served in either the American or Israeli armies. The reason I didn't serve in the Israeli army was mainly because I grew up in the US, so I can only serve by choice, which is up to me only. Meanwhile, I am pretty much too old to serve in the US army, though I was never drafted and I ran out the clock on that, so I don't need to serve this one either. Still, not serving in the military doesn't change anything nor does it give any reasons for launching personal attacks at me. It's sort of like those who don't like the WNBA, because I can tell the difference between someone who just doesn't find that league to not being their cup of tea compared to someone who is making sexist remarks at it. Seriously, that comment by that whaat? person, who is probably one of you in disguise for an alter ego, is another example of a personal attack, and it's not like I try to make stereotypes or insults about someone's life, I just state why I disagree, but I don't go attacking the person. If you don't like what I am saying, then simply don't read it like a mature adult, because it wasn't as if someone was pointing a gun to your head or a knife at your throat, and then saying that you must read it or you will be killed for refusing to do so. Let's not forget that if you have the right to express how feel about something, then so do others. One other thing, I have NEVER forced any censorship on others, but I can cite how many have demanded me to be censored countless times.
Sept. 16, 2013, 2:38 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Whomever was the imposter impersonating me today at 3:38 needs to immediately apologize. I could not be at my computer, b/c I was at that exact time I was watching a rerun of I love Lucy at my Mothers' house, after catching a replay of the New York Liberty playing the Ozark Mugwump Mountain Snatchlickers. I actually served in the Antarctican Yiddish Defense League but that is besides the point. Back to the issue. Since when does one need to live somewhere to voice his opinion on another place? I don't currently live in Israel, yet I have plenty of opinions on Hamas, which I am entitled to b/c I am a nerdy leftist. Why is it that everyone on this site just wants a bunch of yesmen rather than intelligent debate to which I try to inject the voice of countering reason? If the borough was trying to slow down cyclists instead of spewing hateraid on the Barclays' Center, I am sure that the streetsblogger zealouts would be singing a different tune. Maybe it is b/c my debunking raises serious issues to which Ty and Other Mike, etc. find doesn't fit their preconcieved notions. I may not live in Brooklyn but the last time I checked it was a part of New York City so I am entiteled to my opinion, without the constant personal attacks against my person, which I consider the mark of a coward.
Sept. 16, 2013, 2:47 pm
bkdude64 says:
ha ha
Sept. 17, 2013, 4:45 am

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