Dozens of law enforcement gear up for mass casualty drill at SPAC

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There’s a big event this weekend at SPAC, and you won’t find on it on the LiveNation calendar. It’s a simulated concert in which there’s a simulated mass casualty incident.

State Park Police, State Police, Saratoga Springs Police Department, Saratoga Hospital and Albany Medical Center are all taking part. They represent all the agencies needed in the event something awful should happen at SPAC.

They met Tuesday in advance of Sunday’s big training exercise – a mass casualty event at a simulated Dave Matthews concert when tens of thousands of people typically fill the amphitheater and the lawn.

There’ll be volunteers portraying hundreds of injured people, some of them critically.

“As we see throughout the country and throughout the world today, we just need to be prepared for any of the possibilities that might come and make sure that we keep people as safe as they can be,” Sgt. Jeffrey Santor with the New York State Park Police said.

More than 50 law enforcement will be on scene Sunday. A response this big involving so many agencies would require coordination of the information.

NewsChannel 13’s Mark Mulholland was invited to speak about the expectation of the news media at a mass casualty event. It’s all about preparing for an event they hope will never happen at an iconic venue.

“It’s certainly the most unique, the most open and with that, gives us these challenges and that’s why we want to have our exercise and prepare, so that we know what to expect,” Santor said.

Volunteers are needed to portray concertgoers and victims. It’s Sunday from 7 a.m. to noon. Refreshments are available. You must fill out this form.