Preparing home front
Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Office
The IDF will start Sunday a massive drill including a missile attack on Israel, a chopper crashing into a residential neighborhood, riots in Wadi Ara, and dangerous chemicals found in the Knesset.
Turning Point 5 is a drill aimed at testing whether the home front is prepared for war.
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At its first stages, the drill will focus on Tel Aviv, where Ichilov Hospital will drill a state of emergency. Later Sunday the parking lot of Habima Theater is scheduled to become a massive shelter protecting against missiles.
For the next five days national emergency services – including the Homefront Command, police, paramedics, ministries, and local authorities – will participate in the drill, which will mostly be conducted through debates and hearings.
Soldiers during previous drill (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Office)
But a number of field drills will also be included. A Galilee poultry factory will be targeted by missiles while in Zichron Yaakov a bus will crash into a truck laden with toxic chemicals. In Karmiel a chopper will drop onto a residential area and in Wadi Ara police will practice handling rioting Arabs.
Other drills will include mass evacuations of citizens, a water crisis, and toxic chemical spills. Altogether 80 local authorities are to participate in the drill.
Thursday's gas blast in Netanya, which killed four and wounded dozens, has provided many participants with incentive. "The incident in Netanya demonstrates the importance of readiness," said head of the Homefront Command headquarters, Brigadier-General Zvika Tessler.
"It may not have been a terror attack, but in its characteristics it is similar to a rocket attack on a building. In this incident, one can see all of the relevant bodies in action, the coordination between them and the level of efficiency."
The Homefront Command also plans to incorporate in the drill a new warning service, which sends text messages alerting citizens in the relevant area to rocket attacks. "Drill – have a nice day, from the Homefront Command," the SMS will say.
Turning Point 5 will reach its peak on Wednesday, when alarms will sound at 11 am and 7 pm to alert citizens to rush to bomb shelters.
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