CISA, Kansas Speedway and Local Partners Conduct Joint Exercise to Keep NASCAR Fans Safe


Phil Kirk, Regional Director Region 7

Kansas Speedway

CISA, the Kansas Speedway, state and local first responders, and law enforcement officials held a tabletop exercise (TTX) today to test incident response plans focused on hypothetical public safety incidents at Kansas Speedway. Dozens of representatives from multiple government agencies and the greater Kansas City community discussed their roles, shared best practices, and improved coordination mechanisms to help keep the public safe. The exercise is part of ongoing public safety efforts by Kansas Speedway and was not in response to any specific threat.

Today’s multi-part exercise was just one of the many examples of the planning and coordination that takes place long before race day to keep fans safe. Simulated events and joint exercises with trusted partners are important components of emergency preparedness. If a real-world emergency happens no single agency is going to respond alone. We need strong, trusted, reliable relationships with partners who have each other’s best interests at heart. This is exactly what CISA; the Kansas Speedway; and federal, state, and local agencies from across the region share: We have each other’s best interests at heart and trust one another to do what is right to protect the people and places we care about.

Today’s exercise provided invaluable feedback for each participating emergency response team due to its complex scenarios. The Kansas Speedway TTX tested responses to multiple cascading threats making the multifaceted event a challenge for all involved.

“Kansas Speedway’s goal is to always provide an enjoyable and entertaining experience for all of our fans, but that can’t happen unless we provide them a facility that is as safe as possible,” said Kansas Speedway President Pat Warren. “It takes coordination and preparation from all stakeholders to make that a reality, and we’re blessed to work hand in hand with the best federal, state and local authorities to ensure our vigilance doesn’t waiver.”

The NASCAR Cup Series returns to Kansas Speedway May 7 for the AdventHealth 400. CISA encourages everyone who plans to attend the race or any other large public gathering to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to event personnel or law enforcement. The Department of Homeland Security’s See Something, Say Something® campaign has more information on reporting suspicious behavior.

CISA works with sports leagues, teams, stadiums and arenas, and other large venues around the country to develop and exercise response plans for all of the potential threats in today’s environment. CISA participates in approximately 30 exercises a year, and the agency has staff strategically located throughout the United States to advise businesses, schools and other organizations of all sizes on ways to enhance their security and resilience. Security resources and tools are available on the agency’s website through its Hometown Security initiative.

To learn more about how CISA helps secure public gatherings, visit Securing Public Gatherings | Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency CISA