Photo: Avi Cohen

54 police officers hurt during drill

Mass police exercise in south takes turn for the worst as car crash injures five officers, mock riot results in dozens of casualties

Some 54 police officers sustained minor injuries on Thursday during an exercise gone awry.


The Police Department held an exercise simulating mass riot and crowd control procedures near the southern military base of Zeelim.


The drill involved 6,000 police and Border Guard officers. The injuries occurred after "rioters" apparently used excessive force on "peacekeeping" officers during a mock disturbance .


All of the injured were treated on site and according to the police, none of needed to be taken to a hospital.


Scene of accident that injured five officers


A car crash was also reported during the drill, as five police officers were injured after the driver of one of the police vehicles lost control of his car.


One of the officers sustained severe injuries and was airlifted to a nearby hospital. Another officer was moderately hurt and three other suffered minor injuries.


The exercise, said the Department, was meant to bolster police deterrence and enhance the officers' ability to handle complex situations.


One of the drill's goals was to implement lessons learned during the Akko riots, and to examine the cooperation between the various police divisions.


Police Commissioner Dudi Cohen noted the despite the unfortunate events of the day, the drill was successful. The police force, he added, "was ready for any complex scenario, as well as for protecting law and order and maintaining public peace." 


Efrat Weiss contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 12.18.08, 14:32
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