UK
29/02/2016 05:15 GMT | Updated 29/02/2016 11:59 GMT

London Tube Station Carnage After Tower Block Collapse Simulated For Major 'Unified Response' Training Drill

GRAPHIC CONTENT WARNING

This is the aftermath of a tower block collapsing into a Tube station.

The terrifyingly-real staged scene is part of London emergency services' biggest training exercise in its 150 year history.

The Unified Response exercise, which included a simulation of a tower block collapsing into Waterloo Underground station as it was packed with commuters, will help prepare emergency crews for a large-scale operation in London.

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Europe's biggest ever disaster training drill saw emergency services team deal with a building collapsing into a Tube station

The scene, set-up near Dartford Crossing in a disused power station, will see some 250 people - including medics and fire crews - deal with "blood-soaked" Tube carriages.

The emergency exercise was conducted "simultaneously" at four separate venues in central and south east London as well as at the former power station and will last four days.

According to the London Fire Service the scenario "will be based on a significant building collapse, incorporating heavy transport and mass casualties".

Fire crews worked side-by-side with more than 70 partner agencies including local councils, utility companies and specialist search and rescue teams to respond to the mock disaster.

Disaster victim identification teams from all UK police regions also joined the exercise, working closely with forensic specialists.

Chief Constable Debbie Simpson, of the National Police Chiefs, told the Evening Standard: "Victim identification is never a pleasant subject to discuss but it is unfortunately a reality.

"When disaster strikes families need to be confident that the authorities are doing everything they can to identify their loved ones in a dignified and respectful way, whilst supporting any criminal investigation.

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The exercise involves over 250 staff and will last four days

"Importantly this process cannot be hurried. As frustrating as this can sometimes be, especially in a world of fast paced mainstream and social media, we have to be meticulous in our approach to ensure we achieve reliable scientific identification.

"It's not often we get to test working practices on such a scale and it's really positive to see so many of our European colleagues involved. Effective evaluation and debriefing will help highlight good practice and any areas for development."

The exercise comes after teams from the UK were deployed in recent years to help in the aftermath of the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in July 2014 and the Shoreham Air Crash in August last year.

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