Edinburgh major incident exercise to be held over four days

There will be a major emergency services and military operation under way in Edinburgh as agencies test their responses to a major incident.
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Police Scotland has outlined its plans to take part in a multi-agency simulated exercise in the Capital from Monday to Thursday and has warned residents that they may see an increased number of emergency services and military vehicles during that time.

The aim of the exercise is to provide officers and crews with training and experience of attending and working with other agencies on a major incident. In this case, it will test the multi-agency response to an incident involving hazardous materials.

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It has been a while since the last exercise of its kind took place, with the Covid pandemic having halted operations. The last practice operation held in Scotland was in October 2017.

There will be a heavy police presence in Edinburgh next week. Picture: John DevlinThere will be a heavy police presence in Edinburgh next week. Picture: John Devlin
There will be a heavy police presence in Edinburgh next week. Picture: John Devlin

Assistant chief constable Mark Williams, head of operational support, said: “This is one of many pre-planned exercises and not in response to any specific threat. The public should rightly expect Police Scotland to practice and strengthen our response to a major incident alongside other organisations. We are part of a well-established multi-agency training programme that provides valuable training and learning. It’s important for exercises to be as realistic as possible however they are always planned proportionately in controlled settings and there will be limited disruption to people living nearby.”

The exercise is being organised by the Scottish Multi-Agency Resilience Training and Exercise Unit (SMARTEU). Other agencies involved in this particular exercise include NHS Lothian, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh Council.