Exercise Dark Cloud

25 May 2015
On Thursday 14 May 2015, a chemical, biological and radiological/nuclear (CBRN) crime scene exercise took place on the grounds of the Peter McAulay Centre.
Environmental air sampling
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Participating Forensic Science Branch personnel, both sworn and civilian, were drawn from all over the Territory including Alice Springs and Katherine. The purpose of the exercise was to test the capabilities and processes developed to safely and effectively process a crime scene in which a CBRN, or suspected CBRN hazard was present. This necessitated that the participants wear different levels of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and adopt specialised evidence collection protocols.

The exercise outline for Dark Cloud involved the discovery by Police of a clandestine laboratory in a house in which a biological agent was suspected of being developed. Responding teams were then required to evaluate, record and document the scene as well as collect a large variety of intelligence and physical evidence. All while wearing PPE that was uncomfortable, hot and which restricted their range of movement and breathing.

The exercise was a success with all objectives having been met. The success of the exercise couldn’t have been achieved without the fantastic support of the NT Fire Rescue Service, NT Emergency Services and St John’s Ambulance.