BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), The World Games 2022 Birmingham Organizing Committee, City of Birmingham, Jefferson County Emergency Management, state and local first responders and law enforcement officials held a tabletop exercise today to test response plans around hypothetical public safety incidents on the day of The World Games 2022.
The World Games 2022 Active Threat Tabletop Exercise brought together private sector partners, local first responders, as well as state and federal partners, to discuss pre-incident and incident information sharing procedures and emergency response and recovery operations following a hypothetical complex coordinated attack in Birmingham, Alabama. This exercise took place virtually over four hours on Sept. 15, 2021, and focused on pre-incident information sharing, incident response, and immediate recovery.
“Today’s exercise was just one of the many examples of the planning and coordination that takes place long before the games to keep fans and athletes safe,” said CISA Executive Assistant Director for Infrastructure Security David Mussington. “Everyone has a role to play, and CISA looks forward to continuing to work with our partners throughout the region as we do our part to ensure the games are safe and secure.”
Participants discussed their roles, shared best practices, and improved coordination mechanisms to help keep the public safe during The World Games 2022. The World Games is an 11-day international multi-sport event organized with the support of the International Olympic Committee. Held the year following the Summer Olympic Games, The World Games 2022 will showcase a New Generation of Global Sports in Birmingham from July 7-17, 2022. Today’s exercise was part of an ongoing partnership between those involved and was not in response to any specific threat.
“Elite athletes from all over the world will be coming to Birmingham for The World Games 2022 to compete for gold in 34 sports at 14 different venues around the greater metropolitan area. Thousands will be participating in and watching these exciting events, and their safety is our top priority,” said Jay Kasten, Chief Operating Officer, The World Games 2022. “This exercise was an excellent opportunity to work with our federal, state and community partners as we all prepare to make The World Games 2022 an inspiring, memorable and safe experience.”
The public has a critical role to play in security throughout The World Games 2022. CISA encourages anyone attending the games and surrounding events to follow the guidance of their state and local health officials and remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to 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. Resources and tools are available on the agency’s website through its Hometown Security initiative.
For more information on The World Games 2022, visit twg2022.com.